Autonomy and normativity have had an often beleaguered association in the annals of theory, practice, and art, but seldom has their link been suppressed. From the beginning, philosophy has understood its pursuit of truth to depend upon the autonomy of reason. Without reason’s liberty to question everything, philosophical inquiry could never escape the hold of prevailing authority and a relativizing subservience to whatever claims that authority privileges. Moreover, without the positive freedom to generate ideas independently of antecedent dogma, philosophy could never advance from conditioned opinion to truths unconditioned by bondage to unexamined givens. Whenever the legitimacy of conduct has become an issue, freedom has equally had to be enlisted, first, as the constituent gateway to the sphere of responsible action circumscribing right and wrong, and second, as the conduit from enslavement under ruling convention to the enactment of practices that are as they ought to be. Finally, for beauty to be evaluated in its own right, shorn of magical, sacred, or prosaic concerns, the necessities of given form and antecedent rules have had to make way for autonomy to accommodate the individuality, originality and creativity pervading the aesthetic fit of meaning and configuration.