David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jonathan Jenkins Ichikawa
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland, John Rawls received his undergraduate and graduate education at Princeton. After earning his Ph.D. in philosophy in 1950, Rawls taught at Princeton, Cornell, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and, since 1962, at Harvard, where he is now emeritus. Rawls is best known for A Theory of Justice (1971) and for developments of that theory he has published since. Rawls believes that the utilitarian tradition has dominated modern political philosophy in English-speaking countries because its critics have failed to develop an alternative social and political theory as complete and systematic. Rawls's aim is to develop such an alternative: a contractarian view of justice, derived from the tradition of Locke, Rousseau, and especially Kant. Rawls carries social contract theory to a "higher order of abstraction" by viewing the principles of justice themselves as the objects of a social contract. Justice is the solution to a problem, which arises in this way: Society, as it is conceived in a liberal democracy, is a cooperative venture between free and equal persons for their mutual advantage. Individuals participate in it in order to implement their conceptions of the good life. Cooperation makes a better life possible for everyone by increasing the stock of what Rawls calls "primary goods" - things which it is rational to want whatever else you want, because they are required for any conception of a good life. Primary social goods include rights, liberties, powers, opportunities, income, wealth, and the social bases of self-respect. But society is also characterized by conflict, since people disagree not only about how its benefits and burdens should be distributed, but also about conceptions of the good. Principles of justice are used to evaluate the distributions of benefits and burdens and the institutions which effect them. Rawls's idea is to identify an acceptable conception of justice by asking what principles it would be reasonable for the members of society to agree to, which is to say, what principles would be fair..
|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
Nir Eyal (2005). ‘Perhaps the Most Important Primary Good’: Self-Respect and Rawls’s Principles of Justice. Politics, Philosophy and Economics 4 (2):195-219.
Samuel Richard Freeman (2006). Justice and the Social Contract: Essays on Rawlsian Political Philosophy. Oxford University Press.
Jon Mandle (2013). The Place of Rawls in Political and Ethical Theory. Metaphilosophy 44 (1-2):37-41.
Fabienne Peter (2009). Rawlsian Justice. In Paul Anand, Prastanta Pattanaik & Clemens Puppe (eds.), The Handbook of Rational and Social Choice. Oxford University Press 433--456.
Dong Jin Jang (2008). Rawls and Natural Justice. Proceedings of the Xxii World Congress of Philosophy 29:31-43.
Kevin W. Gray (2012). Rawls and the Problem of Honour. Philosophia 40 (2):213-222.
Gerald Doppelt (2009). The Place of Self-Respect in a Theory of Justice. Inquiry 52 (2):127 – 154.
Percy B. Lehning (1998). The Coherence of Rawls's Plea for Democratic Equality. Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy 1 (4):1-41.
Ian Hunt (2011). How Egalitarian is Rawls's Theory of Justice? Philosophical Papers 39 (2):155-181.
Philip Pettit (1974). A Theory of Justice? Theory and Decision 4 (3-4):311-324.
Larry A. Alexander (1985). Fair Equality of Opportunity. Philosophy Research Archives 11:197-208.
Rodney G. Peffer (2008). A Modified Rawlsian Theory of Social Justice: “Justice as Fair Rights”. Proceedings of the Xxii World Congress of Philosophy 50:593-608.
M. Bankovsky (2011). Social Justice: Defending Rawls' Theory of Justice Against Honneth's Objections. Philosophy and Social Criticism 37 (1):95-118.
Added to index2010-12-22
Total downloads60 ( #76,069 of 1,938,529 )
Recent downloads (6 months)6 ( #98,698 of 1,938,529 )
How can I increase my downloads?