The article elaborates a reading that opposes Kant to Deleuze. By means of his exhortation to becoming-minor, Deleuze seems to accomplish the reversal of the Kantian program aimed at the emergence of man from «his self-incurred minority», thus marking the end of an era. Following this hypothesis, the essay develops a history of emancipation from the Enlightenment to the Twentieth century, retracing a path that includes Sartre, Foucault and Bataille. Such a history of emancipation intersects the legacy of dandyism and the interpretations that three French thinkers offered of the figure of Baudelaire; by so doing it allows a confrontation among these authors. Focusing in particular on the minor-major dichotomy, the article reveals its different connotations and raises a question about the meaning of emancipation in the contemporary age as well as about its possible subject. Lastly, it reflects upon the capacity that philosophy still maintains to exert an emancipatory role.