Keywords: Reputation; Identity; Recognition; Otherness; Social Categorization.
By adopting a perspective based on the concept of reputation this paper propose some theoretical reflections on the dialectics between the process of otherness definition and the practices of resistance. Attention is paid to intersubjective and institutional dynamics through which the differences defining identity of the other take certain "colourings" - good/bad, positive/negative, best/worst, reliable/unreliable - depending on assessments and judgments emerging in specific social contexts. Compared to identity studies the additional contribution of this perspective is precisely to emphasize the evaluative feature of recognition processes and to offer a glimpse of how recurring judging practices produce effects in terms of inclusion/exclusion, not only because others are considered different but because of the type of evaluations anchored to their identity. In many everyday situations people have to deal with passive attributions of reputation - concerning them as individuals or as members of a particular group - but they can also pursue active strategies of accreditation. The tension between reputations attributed and acquired opens space to strategic behaviors that go beyond identity expressions: the proud exhibition of difference or the attempt to convert otherness into a positive register.