Hyper-pluralism and the multivariate democratic polity

Philosophy and Social Criticism 38 (4-5):435-444 (2012)
Abstract
In the global world, momentous migratory tides have produced hyper-pluralism on the domestic scale, bringing citizens with radically different conceptions of life, justice and the good to coexist side by side. Conjectural arguments about the acceptance of pluralism, the next best to public reason when shared premises are too thin, may not succeed in convincing all constituencies. What resources, then, can liberal democracy mobilize? The multivariate democratic polity is the original answer to this question, based on an interpretation of Rawls which revisits Political Liberalism in the light of The Law of Peoples . The unscrutinized assumption is highlighted, often read into Rawls’s Political Liberalism , that a polity moves homogeneously and all of a piece from religious conflict to modus vivendi, constitutional consensus and finally to overlapping consensus. Drawing on The Law of Peoples , a different picture can be obtained
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