Reality and imagination in political theory and practice: On Raymond Geuss’s realism [Book Review]

Abstract
Can political theory be action-guiding without relying on pre-political normative commitments? I answer that question affirmatively by unpacking two related tenets of Raymond Geuss’ political realism: the view that political philosophy should not be a branch of ethics, and the ensuing empirically-informed conception of legitimacy. I argue that the former idea can be made sense of by reference to Hobbes’ account of authorization, and that realist legitimacy can be normatively salient in so far as it stands in the correct relation to a theory of justice and problematizes its sources of value through what Geuss terms ‘political imagination’.
Keywords Political Realism  Raymond Geuss  Authority  Legitimacy
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Citations of this work BETA
Enzo Rossi (2012). Justice, Legitimacy, and (Normative) Authority for Political Realists. Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy 15 (2):149-164.
Enzo Rossi (2013). Consensus, Compromise, Justice and Legitimacy. Critical Review of Social and International Political Philosophy 16 (4):557-572.
Similar books and articles
Enzo Rossi (2012). Justice, Legitimacy, and (Normative) Authority for Political Realists. Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy 15 (2):149-164.
James Gledhill (2012). Rawls and Realism. Social Theory and Practice 38 (1):55-82.
Fabienne Peter, Political Legitimacy. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Enzo Rossi (2013). Consensus, Compromise, Justice and Legitimacy. Critical Review of Social and International Political Philosophy 16 (4):557-572.
Raymond Geuss (2005). Outside Ethics. Princeton University Press.
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