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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Autonomy (Greek: Auto-Nomos - nomos meaning "law": one who gives oneself his own law) is the right to self-government. Autonomy is a concept found in moral, political, and bioethical philosophy. Within these contexts, it refers to the capacity of a rational individual to make an informed, uncoerced decision. In moral and political philosophy, autonomy is often used as the basis for determining moral responsibility for one's actions. One of the best known philosophical theories of autonomy was developed by Kant. In medicine, respect for the autonomy of patients is considered obligatory for doctors and other health-care professionals. Politically, it is also used to refer to the self-governing of a people.

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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Autonomy" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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