Some communitarians about personhood hold that human communities are metaphysically antecedent to individual persons, and that personhood comes in degrees, and that one becomes a person through ethical maturation within a community. I offer a new communitarianism that also endorses those claims. It is based partly on certain African accounts of the person—primarily Menkiti’s account—and partly on Mark Johnston’s extraordinary argument that extremely good persons are literally at one with the human community itself. The theory’s concept of the person is a novel understanding of the social self. I argue that the account helps to solve three puzzles to do with communitarian conceptions of personhood. One puzzle is about understanding the individual person as an individual. Another relates to the alleged metaphysical priority of communities over persons. And a third is a problem for the view that personhood is graded.

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