Political Liberalism
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Political Liberalism

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This book continues and revises the ideas of justice as fairness that John Rawls presented in A Theory of Justice but changes its philosophical interpretation in a fundamental way. That previous work assumed what Rawls calls a "well-ordered society," one that is stable and relatively homogenous in its basic moral beliefs and in which there is broad agreement about what constitutes the good life. Yet in modern democratic society a plurality of incompatible and irreconcilable doctrines-religious, philosophical, and moral-coexist within the framework of democratic institutions. Recognizing this as a permanent condition of democracy, Rawls asks how a stable and just society of free and equal citizens can live in concord when divided by reasonable but incompatible doctrines? This edition includes the essay "The Idea of Public Reason Revisited," which outlines Rawls' plans to revise Political Liberalism, which were cut short by his death. "An extraordinary well-reasoned commentary on A Theory of Justice...a decisive turn towards political philosophy." -Times Literary Supplementshow more

Product details

  • Paperback | 576 pages
  • 152.4 x 223.5 x 33mm | 771.12g
  • Columbia University Press
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • Enlarged
  • Expanded Edition
  • 0231130899
  • 9780231130899
  • 60,001

About John Rawls

The late John Rawls was professor emeritus of philosophy at Harvard University. His other books include The Law of Peoples with "The Idea of Public Reason Revisited" and Justice as Fairness: A Restatement. Martha Nussbaum is Ernest Freund Distinguished Professor of Law and Ethics at the University of Chicago. She is the author of many books, including Sex and Social Justice, Love's Knowledge, and Hiding from Humanity.show more

Table of contents

Introduction Introduction to the Paperback Edition Part I. Political Liberalism: Basic Elements Lecture I. Fundamental Ideas Addressing Two Fundamental Questions The Idea of a Political Conception of Justice The Idea of Society as a Fair System of Cooperation The Idea of the Original Position The Political Conception of the Person The Idea of a Well-Ordered Society Neither a Community nor an Association The Use of Abstract Conceptions Lecture II. The Powers of Citizens and Their Representation The Reasonable and the Rational The Burdens of Judgement Reasonable Comprehensive Doctrines The Publicity Condition: Its Three Levels Rational Autonomy: Artificial not Political Full Autonomy: Political not Ethical The Basis of Motivation in the Person Moral Psychology: Philosophical not Psychological Lecture III. Political Constructivism The Idea of a Constructivist Conception Kant's Moral Constructivism Justice as Fairness as a Constructivist View The Role of Conceptions of Society and Person Three Conceptions of Objectivity Objectivity Independent of the Casual View of Knowledge When Do Objective Reasons Exist, Politically Speaking? The Scope of Political Constructivism Part II. Political Liberalism: Three Main Ideas Lecture IV. The Idea of an Overlapping Consensus How is Political Liberalism Possible? The Question of Stability Three Features of an Overlapping Consensus An Overlapping Consensus not Indifferent or Skeptical A Political Conception Need Not Be Comprehensive Steps to Constitutional Consensus Steps to Overlapping Consensus Conception and Doctrines: How Related Lecture V. Priority of Right and Ideas of the Good How a Political Conception Limits Conceptions of the Good Goodness as Rationality Primary Goods and Interpersonal Comparisons Primary Goods as Citizens' Need Permissible Conceptions of the Good and Political Virtues Is Justice as Fairness Fair to Conceptions of the Good? The Good of Political Society That Justice as Fairness is Complete Lecture VI. The Idea of Public Reason The Question and Forums of Public Right Public Reason and the Ideal of Democratic Citizenship Nonpublic Reasons The Content of Public Reason The Ideal of Constitutional Essentials The Supreme Court as Exemplar of Public Reason Apparent Difficulties with Public Reason The Limits of Public Reason Part III. Institutional Framework Lecture VII.The Basic Structure as Subject First Subject of Justice Unity by Appropriate Sequence Libertarianism Has No Special Role for the Basic Structure The Importance of Background Justice How the Basic Structure Affects Individuals Initial Agreement as Hypothetical and Nonhistorical Special Features of the Initial Agreement The Social Nature of Human Relationships Ideal Form for the Basic Structure Reply to Hegel's Criticism Lecture VIII. The Basic Liberties and Their Priority The Initial Aim of Justice as Fairness The Special Status of Basic Liberties Conceptions of Person and Social Cooperation The Original Position Priority of Liberties, I: Second Moral Power Priority of Liberties, II: First Moral Power Basic Liberties not Merely Formal A Fully Adequate Scheme of Basic Liberties How Liberties Fit into One Coherent Scheme Free Political Speech The Clear and Present Danger Rule Maintaining the Fair Value of Political Liberties Liberties Connected with the Second Principle The Role of Justice as Fairness Lecture IX. Reply to Habermas Two Main Differences Overlapping Consensus and Justification Liberties of the Moderns Versus the Will of the People The Roots of the Liberties Procedural Versus Substantive Justice Conclusionshow more

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