The request of recognition is nowadays being raised under strongly varying conditions, as in the name of minorities, collective identities or within feminism. Still growing emphasis on the need of recognition is based on the assumption of certain links existing between recognition and identity, where the identity is used to specify human self-understanding. The first part of the study tries to follow the argumentation in support of the social and cultural recognition theory. While interpreting this theory, the author focuses on the works of contemporary influential recognition theory philosophers, namely Ch. Taylor and A. Honneth. The second part of the study explores the relationship between the recognition of collective identities and the ideal of individual autonomy.