Legal and moral norms have strengthened their protection of individual autonomy over the centuries. The emphasis and impressions by most scholars regarding this progress have, nonetheless, often been misleading. It is not that we have developed better standards by which to protect a pre-existing notion of autonomy. This puts the endeavor backwards. It is, to the contrary, that our evolving rules and standards of rights and duties create and delineate what we mean by autonomy. Autonomy, in a nutshell, is that which is protected by adopted norms. This article unpacks the principles supporting this conclusion and offers guidance for further progress.
Kuklin, Bailey H, Constructing Autonomy (May 26, 2015). NYU Journal of Law and Liberty, Vol 9, p 375, 2015; Brooklyn Law School, Legal Studies Paper No 415.