David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
What is “political constructivism”? And to what extent is it of general use to political philosophy? My aim is to suggest that we can extract answers to these questions from John Rawls’s most clearly constructivist work, “Kantian Constructivism in Moral Theory.” In particular, we can formulate political constructivism as a general approach to political philosophy which is free from at least two limitations that Rawls himself might otherwise seem to place on its potential scope. The first is the special “political” constraints of the later Rawls’s political liberalism. Although “Kantian Constructivism in Moral Theory” foreshadows Rawls’s later political turn, it presents a distinct “pre-political” constructivist approach which was at best implicit in the earlier A Theory of Justice. My question is what this distinct approach is. The second limitation, which appears across Rawls’s corpus, is that Rawls never clearly formulates his constructivism independently of the specific social contexts that interest him, the major institutions of modern constitutional democracies and modern international law and practice.[i] And it is not otherwise obvious how his specific accounts should generalize into to other areas of social life. What their general, underlying rationales might be and how if at all they apply is at best highly controversial.[ii] Indeed, according to one plausible view, sometimes suggested by Rawls himself, political constructivism assumes certain “basic” structures, and so applies nowhere else. Unless it could be argued that the remaining areas of social life never raise relevant concerns of social justice—a difficult sort of argument to make—political constructivism becomes of at best of limited (albeit still significant) use to political philosophy.[iii] My more general characterization of political constructivism will allow it to have broader application. As I will explain, the approach has fruitful application in at least two important areas of world politics: the institutions that organize the global economy (especially the system of trade), and international human rights-motivated interventions other than the use of outright coercion and force (e.g..
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library||
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Andrew Williams (2008). Justice, Incentives and Constructivism. Ratio 21 (4):476-493.
Carla Bagnoli, Constructivism in Metaethics. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Rainer Forst (2011). The Right to Justification: Elements of a Constructivist Theory of Justice. Columbia University Press.
Alan Carter (2006). The Evolution of Rawls's Justification of Political Compliance: Part 1 of the Problem of Political Compliance in Rawls's Theories of Justice. Journal of Moral Philosophy 3 (1):7-21.
Alan Carter (2006). Political Liberalism and Political Compliance: Part 2 of the Problem of Political Compliance in Rawls’s Theories of Justice. Journal of Moral Philosophy 3 (2):135-157.
Thomas M. Besch (2013). On Political Legitimacy, Reasonableness, and Perfectionism. Public Reason 5 (1):58-74.
Thomas M. Besch (2004). On Practical Constructivism and Reasonableness. Dissertation, University of Oxford
Sylvia Burrow (2001). Reasonable Moral Psychology and the Kantian Ace in the Hole. Social Philosophy Today 17:37-55.
John R. Wright (2002). Conflicts of Value and the Political Ideal of Citizenship. Social Philosophy Today 18:167-181.
Added to index2009-04-22
Total downloads160 ( #7,743 of 1,699,674 )
Recent downloads (6 months)24 ( #29,086 of 1,699,674 )
How can I increase my downloads?