David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Ratio 21 (4):454-475 (2008)
Cohen seeks to rescue the concept of justice from those, among whom he includes Rawls, who think that correct fundamental moral principles are fact-sensitive. Cohen argues instead that any fundamental principles of justice, and fundamental moral principles generally, are fact-insensitive and that any fact-sensitive principles can be traced back to fact-insensitive ones. This paper seeks to clarify the nature of Cohen's argument, and the kind of fact-insensitivity he has in mind. In particular, it distinguishes between internal and external fact-sensitivity – that is, whether facts are referenced in the content of the principle, or must otherwise be the case in order for the principle to apply at all. Cohen himself seems likely to endorse internally fact-sensitive fundamental principles. This leads to a discussion of Cohen's Platonism about moral principles and the extent to which his arguments cover all its rivals. 1.
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Laura Valentini (2012). Ideal Vs. Non-Ideal Theory: A Conceptual Map. Philosophy Compass 7 (9):654-664.
Holly Lawford-Smith (2013). Understanding Political Feasibility. Journal of Political Philosophy 21 (3):243-259.
Holly Lawford-Smith (2010). Debate: Ideal Theory—A Reply to Valentini. Journal of Political Philosophy 18 (3):357-368.
Edward Hall (2013). Political Realism and Fact-Sensitivity. Res Publica 19 (2):173-181.
Christopher Freiman (2012). Why Poverty Matters Most: Towards a Humanitarian Theory of Social Justice. Utilitas 24 (01):26-40.
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