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  1. Thomas M. Besch (2012). Political Liberalism, the Internal Conception, and the Problem of Public Dogma. Philosophy and Public Issues 2 (1):153-177.
    According to the “internal” conception (Quong), political liberalism aims to be publicly justifiable only to people who are reasonable in a special sense specified and advocated by political liberalism itself. One advantage of the internal conception allegedly is that it enables liberalism to avoid perfectionism. The paper takes issue with this view. It argues that once the internal conception is duly pitched at its fundamental, metatheoretical level and placed in its proper discursive context, it emerges that it comes at the (...)
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  2. Thomas Biebricher & Frieder Vogelmann (forthcoming). Governmentality and State Theory: Reinventing the Reinvented Wheel? Theory and Event 15 (3).
    In this paper we pose the question what constitutes the originality of governmentality as a state analytical framework by confronting it with alternative contemporary approaches in state theory, suggesting that the latter may already contain many of the insights Foucaultians sometimes tend to ascribe to the governmentality perspective exclusively and thus run the risk of reinventing the state theoretical wheel. Still, we argue that there is something unique to the governmentality perspective, namely a particular kind of unwieldy knowledge about the (...)
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  3. Francesco Biondo (2012). Comparative Vs. Transcendental Approaches to Justice: A Misleading Dichotomy in Sen'sThe Idea of Justice. Ratio Juris 25 (4):555-577.
    This paper examines the distinction drawn by Amartya Sen between transcendental and comparative theories of justice, and its application to Rawls' doctrine. It then puts forward three arguments. First, it is argued that Sen offers a limited portrayal of Rawls' doctrine. This is the result of a rhetorical strategy that depicts Rawlsian doctrine as more “transcendental” than it really is. Although Sen deploys numerous quotations in support of his interpretation, it is possible to offer a less transcendental interpretation of Rawls. (...)
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  4. Michael Buckley (2012). Justice in Context: Assessing Contextualism as an Approach to Justice. Ethics and Global Politics 5 (2):71-94.
    Moral and political philosophers are increasingly using empirical data to inform their normative theories. This has sparked renewed interest into questions concerning the relationship between facts and principles. A recent attempt to frame these questions within a broader approach to normative theory comes from David Miller, who has on several occasions defended ‘contextualism’ as the best approach to justice. Miller argues that the context of distribution itself brings one or another political principle into play. This paper examines this claim. It (...)
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  5. Naima Chahboun (2015). Nonideal Theory and Compliance—A Clarification. European Journal of Political Theory 14 (2):229-245.
    This paper examines the various ways in which nonideal theory responds to noncompliance with ideal principles of justice. Taking Rawls’ definition of nonideal theory as my point of departure, I propose an understanding of this concept as comprising two subparts: Complementary nonideal theory responds to deliberate and avoidable noncompliance and consists mainly of theories of civil disobedience, rebellion, and retribution. Substitutive nonideal theory responds to nondeliberate and unavoidable noncompliance and consists mainly of theories of transition and caretaking. I further argue (...)
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  6. Claudio Corradetti (2013). Philosophical Issues in Transitional Justice Theory: A (Provisional) Balance. Politica E Societa' (2):185-220.
  7. Speranta Dumitru (2014). From Birthright Citizenship to Open Borders? Some Doubts. Ethical Perspectives 21 (4):608-614.
    This paper argues that by overestimating the importance of citizenship rights, the ethics of immigration turns away from the more serious problem of closed borders. Precisely, this contribution is a threefold critique of Carens’ idea that "justice requires that democratic states grant citizenship at birth to the descendants of settled immigrants" (Carens, 2013: 20). Firstly, I argue that by making 'justice' dependent on states and their attributes (birthright citizenship), this idea strengthens methodological nationalism which views humanity as naturally divided into (...)
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  8. Hugo El Kholi (ed.) (2013). Global Justice and Practice-Dependence. Sciences Po Press.
    The practice-dependence approach offers a new way of theorizing about human rights and distributive justice that promises to settle some of the ongoing disputes about their justification, content, and scope. In sharp contrast with naturalistic theories, which conceive of human rights as an abstract moral ideal, practice-dependence theories regard human rights as a public political doctrine constructed to play a specific regulatory role in contemporary world politics. They maintain accordingly that the content of those rights should be determined in light (...)
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  9. Thomas Fossen (2012). Taking Stances, Contesting Commitments: Political Legitimacy and the Pragmatic Turn. Journal of Political Philosophy 21 (1):426-450.
  10. Sudhir Hazareesingh & Karma Nabulsi (2008). Using Archival Sources to Theorize About Politics. In David Leopold & Marc Stears (eds.), Political Theory: Methods and Approaches. Oxford University Press
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  11. Iwao Hirose (2008). Why Be Formal? In David Leopold & Marc Stears (eds.), Political Theory: Methods and Approaches. Oxford University Press
  12. Axel Honneth & Marco Solinas (2010). Capitalismo e riconoscimento. Firenze University Press.
    Capitalismo e riconoscimento" presenta, in cinque saggi per la prima volta raccolti insieme e tradotti in italiano, una densa e pregnante analisi di taluni cruciali processi socio-strutturali, morali e normativi delle società capitalistiche contemporanee dalla prospettiva delle dinamiche del reciproco riconoscimento e del disrispetto concernenti la sfera del lavoro. Particolare attenzione è dedicata ai paradossali rovesciamenti delle istanze di autorealizzazione, autonomia e responsabilità personale registratisi negli ultimi decenni nel quadro di un mercato del lavoro sempre più deregolato.
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  13. Aaron James (2013). Why Practices? Raisons Politiques 51:43-62.
    The practice-based method of justification requires sensitivity to social practices. This raises difficult questions: Must the practices in question be established or at least realistic? How “constructive” can we be in our interpretation of their form or aims? This paper suggests that our answers to these questions can vary with our explanatory purposes. Requirements of realism and sociological accuracy are relatively thin given purely intellectual aims of moral understanding, thicker given the aim of addressing humanity, and thicker still given the (...)
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  14. Robert Jubb (forthcoming). Playing Kant at the Court of King Arthur. Political Studies.
    This article contrasts the sense in which those whom Bernard Williams called ‘political realists’ and John Rawls are committed to the idea that political philosophy has to be distinctively political. Distinguishing the realist critique of political moralism from debates over ideal and non-ideal theory, it is argued that Rawls is more realist than many realists realise, and that realists can learn more about how to make a distinctively political vision of how our life together should be organised from his theorising, (...)
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  15. Robert Jubb & Enzo Rossi (forthcoming). Why Moralists Should Be Afraid of Political Values: A Rejoinder. Journal of Philosophical Research 2015.
    In this rejoinder to Erman and Möller’s reply to our “Political Norms and Moral Values” we clarify the sense in which there can be specifically political values, and expound the practice-dependent notion of legitimacy adopted by our preferred version of political realism.
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  16. Robert Jubb & Enzo Rossi (forthcoming). Political Norms and Moral Values. Journal of Philosophical Research 2015.
    Is genuinely normative political theory necessarily informed by distinctively moral values? Eva Erman and Niklas Möller (2013) answer that question affirmatively, and highlight its centrality in the debate on the prospects of political realism, which explicitly eschews pre-political moral foundations. In this comment we defend the emerging realist current. After briefly presenting Erman and Möller's position, we (i) observe that freedom and equality are not obviously moral values in the way they assume, and (ii) argue that a non-moral distinction between (...)
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  17. Donald S. Klinefelter (1990). How is Applied Philosophy to Be Applied? Journal of Social Philosophy 21 (1):16-26.
  18. Carl Knight (2012). Unit-Ideas Unleashed: A Reinterpretation and Reassessment of Lovejovian Methodology in the History of Ideas. Journal of the Philosophy of History 6 (2):195-217.
    This article argues for an unconventional interpretation of Arthur O. Lovejoy’s distinctive approach to method in the history of ideas. It is maintained that the value of the central concept of the ‘unit-idea’ has been misunderstood by friends and foes alike. The commonality of unit-ideas at different times and places is often defined in terms of familial resemblance. But such an approach must necessarily define unit-ideas as being something other than the smallest conceptual unit. It is therefore in tension with (...)
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  19. Colin Koopman, The Aims of Political Philosophy in John Rawls, Bernard Williams, and Richard Rorty.
    What ought a political philosophy seek to achieve? How should political philosophy address itself to its subject matter? What is the relation between political philosophy and other forms of reflective inquiry? In answering these metaphilosophical questions, political philosophy has long been dominated by a roughly utopian self-image. According to this conception, the aim of political philosophy is the rigorous development of theoretical ideals of justice, state, and law. I show that leading political philosophers of the twentieth century, most notably John (...)
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  20. Günther Küchenhoff (1973). Geometrical Spirit and Natural Right. Inquiry Into the Methods of Political Philosophy in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries. Philosophy and History 6 (2):162-165.
  21. David Leopold (2008). Dialectical Approaches. In David Leopold & Marc Stears (eds.), Political Theory: Methods and Approaches. Oxford University Press
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  22. David Leopold & Marc Stears (2008). Introduction. In David Leopold & Marc Stears (eds.), Political Theory: Methods and Approaches. Oxford University Press
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  23. David Leopold & Marc Stears (eds.) (2008). Political Theory: Methods and Approaches. Oxford University Press.
    Both individually and as a collection, these essays will promote understanding and provoke further debate amongst students and established scholars alike.
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  24. Annabelle Lever (2014). Book Review: A Response to James Rule. Journal of Law, Culture, and Humanities 10 (1).
    James Rule is puzzled by the ‘idiosyncratic’ approach that I take to the philosophical study of privacy. As evidence for this idiosyncracy, he cites my relative indifference to the distinction between consequentialist and deontological perspectives on privacy although these differences are proof of ‘intricate, yet enormously consequential intellectual tensions’. My choice of philosophical topics is ‘unsystematic’ and more a reflection of my own ‘intellectual hobby-horses’ than a ‘well-worked-out view of what students most need to know’. Finally, Rule concludes, because ‘the (...)
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  25. Annabelle Lever (2012). On Privacy. Routledge.
    Privacy is a Janus-faced value. It enables us to shut the world out, but the forms it takes and the extent to which it is protected are fundamentally public matters. Not surprisingly, then, privacy and its protection are the object of some of our most intractable conflicts over the proper role of the state and the rights and duties of individuals. -/- This book explores the Janus-faced features of privacy, and looks at their implications for the control of personal information, (...)
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  26. Yoram Levy (2005). The Situational Context on the Nature of Political Philosophy. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 8 (5):535 - 556.
    Rationalism in political philosophy is the view that politics should be governed by moral principles and that those principles can and should be justified independently of the situations and circumstances that make up political reality. This traditional view of political philosophy implies that the meaning of right political action is determined by moral principles the rational authority of which derives from abstract philosophical reasoning, not from the situations and circumstances that are the substance of political reality. In this essay I (...)
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  27. Christian List & Laura Valentini, Political Theory.
    Political theory, sometimes also called “normative political theory”, is a subfield of the disciplines of philosophy and political science that addresses conceptual, normative, and evaluative questions concerning politics and society, broadly construed. Examples are: When is a society just? What does it mean for its members to be free? When is one distribution of goods socially preferable to another? What makes a political authority legitimate? How should we trade off different values, such as liberty, prosperity, and security, against one another? (...)
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  28. Steven Lukes (2003). Methodological Individualism. In Derek Matravers & Jonathan E. Pike (eds.), Debates in Contemporary Political Philosophy: An Anthology. Routledge, in Association with the Open University
  29. Lois McNay (2008). Recognition as Fact and Norm : The Method of Critique. In David Leopold & Marc Stears (eds.), Political Theory: Methods and Approaches. Oxford University Press
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  30. Saladin Meckled-Garcia (2013). The Practice-Dependence Red Herring and Better Reasons for Restricting the Scope of Justice. Raisons Politiques 51:97-120.
    In this paper, I make three points. The first is that there is indeed a distinctive approach to moral methodology, different from standard moral reasoning, that can be described as “practice-dependence”. I argue that its distinctness lies in recommending an aptness claim , namely that moral principles for regulating social practices must be principles for better fulfilling the point of those practices, a point discoverable in shared understandings of the practice. Participants treat domestic political societies as having a different point (...)
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  31. David Miller (2008). Political Philosophy for Earthlings. In David Leopold & Marc Stears (eds.), Political Theory: Methods and Approaches. Oxford University Press 29--48.
  32. Alan Nelson (1986). Explanation and Justification in Political Philosophy. Ethics 97 (1):154-176.
  33. Kai Nielsen (1994). Methods of Ethics:Wide Reflective Equilibrium and a Kind of Consequentialism. Journal of Social Philosophy 25 (2):57-72.
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  34. Marcus Ohlström, Marco Solinas & Olivier Voirol (2011). On Nancy Fraser and Axel Honneth's Redistribution or Recognition? A Political-Philosophical Exchange. Iris 3 (5):205-221.
  35. Enzo Rossi (forthcoming). Can Realism Move Beyond a Methodenstreit? [REVIEW] Political Theory.
    Is there more to the recent surge in political realism more than just a debate on how best to continue doing what political theorists are already doing? I use two recent books, by Michael Freeden and Matt Sleat, as a testing ground for realism’s claims about its import on the discipline. I argue that both book take realism beyond the Methodenstreit, though each in a different direction: Freeden’s takes us in the realm of meta-metatheory, Sleat’s is a genuine exercise in (...)
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  36. Marco Solinas (2010). Review of Bert van den Brink and David Owen (eds.), Recognition and Power. Axel Honneth and the Tradition of Critical Social Theory. [REVIEW] Iride (59):223-224.
  37. Marco Solinas (2009). Review of Hauke Brunkhorst, Habermas. [REVIEW] Iride (56):253-254.
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  38. Laura Valentini (2012). Ideal Vs. Non-Ideal Theory: A Conceptual Map. Philosophy Compass 7 (9):654-664.
    This article provides a conceptual map of the debate on ideal and non‐ideal theory. It argues that this debate encompasses a number of different questions, which have not been kept sufficiently separate in the literature. In particular, the article distinguishes between the following three interpretations of the ‘ideal vs. non‐ideal theory’ contrast: full compliance vs. partial compliance theory; utopian vs. realistic theory; end‐state vs. transitional theory. The article advances critical reflections on each of these sub‐debates, and highlights areas for future (...)
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  39. David Wiens, Assessing Ideal Theories: Lessons From the Theory of Second Best.
    [Working paper] Numerous philosophers allege that the "general theory of second best" (Lipsey and Lancaster, 1956) poses a challenge to the <em>Target View</em>, which asserts that real world reform efforts should aim to establish arrangements that satisfy the constitutive features of ideal just states of affairs. I demonstrate two claims that are relevant in this context. First, I show that the theory of second best fails to present a compelling challenge to the Target View in general. But, second, the theory (...)
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  40. David Wiens (forthcoming). Political Ideals and the Feasibility Frontier. Economics and Philosophy:1-31.
    Recent methodological debates regarding the place of feasibility considerations in normative political theory are hindered for want of a rigorous model of the feasibility frontier. To address this shortfall, I present an analysis of feasibility that generalizes the economic concept of a production possibility frontier and then develop a rigorous model of the feasibility frontier using the familiar possible worlds technology. I then show that this model has significant methodological implications for political philosophy. On the Target View, a political ideal (...)
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  41. David Wiens (2015). Against Ideal Guidance. Journal of Politics 77 (2):433-446.
    Political philosophers frequently claim that political ideal can provide normative guidance for unjust and otherwise nonideal circumstances. This is mistaken. This paper demonstrates that political ideals contribute nothing to our understanding of the normative principles we should satisfy amidst unjust or otherwise nonideal circumstances.
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  42. David Wiens (2014). 'Going Evaluative' to Save Justice From Feasibility -- A Pyrrhic Victory. Philosophical Quarterly 64 (255):301-307.
    I discuss Gheaus's (2013) argument against the claim that the requirements of justice are not constrained by feasibility concerns. I show that the general strategy exemplified by this argument is not only dialectically puzzling, but also imposes a heavy cost on theories of justice -- puzzling because it simply sidesteps a presupposition of any plausible formulation of the so-called "feasibility requirement"; costly because it it deprives justice of its normative implications for action. I also show that Gheaus's attempt to recover (...)
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  43. David Wiens (2014). Achieving Global Justice: Why Failures Matter More Than Ideals. In Kate Brennan (ed.), Making Global Institutions Work: Power, Accountability and Change. Routledge
    My aim in this paper is twofold. First, I challenge the view that ideal normative principles offer appropriate guidelines for our efforts to identify morally progressive institutional reform strategies. I shall call this view the "ideal guidance approach." Second, I develop an alternative methodological approach to specifying nonideal normative principles, which I call the "failure analysis approach." I contrast these alternatives using examples from the global justice literature.
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  44. David Wiens (2013). Demands of Justice, Feasible Alternatives, and the Need for Causal Analysis. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 16 (2):325-338.
    Many political philosophers hold the Feasible Alternatives Principle (FAP): justice demands that we implement some reform of international institutions P only if P is feasible and P improves upon the status quo from the standpoint of justice. The FAP implies that any argument for a moral requirement to implement P must incorporate claims whose content pertains to the causal processes that explain the current state of affairs. Yet, philosophers routinely neglect the need to attend to actual causal processes. This undermines (...)
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  45. David Wiens (2012). Prescribing Institutions Without Ideal Theory. Journal of Political Philosophy 20 (1):45-70.
    It is conventional wisdom among political philosophers that ideal principles of justice (i.e., principles that would regulate the constitutions of fully just institutional arrangements) must guide our attempts to design institutions to avert actual injustice. Call this the ideal guidance approach. I argue that this view is misguided—ideal principles of justice are not appropriate "guiding principles" that actual institutions must aim to realize, even if only approximately. Fortunately, the conventional wisdom is also avoidable. In this paper, I develop an alternative (...)
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  46. David Wiens (2011). Engineering Global Justice: Achieving Success Through Failure Analysis. Dissertation, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor (UM)
    My dissertation develops a novel approach to institutional analysis and begins to apply this approach to debates in the international justice literature. The main innovation of this institutional failure analysis approach is to ground our normative evaluation of institutions on a detailed understanding of the causal processes that generate problematic social outcomes. Chapters 1 and 2 motivate the need for this new approach, showing that philosophers' neglect of causal explanations of global poverty leads extant normative analyses of poverty astray. The (...)
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