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  1. The Independence/Dependence Paradox Within John Rawls’s Political Liberalism.Ali Rizvi - manuscript
    Rawls in his later philosophy claims that it is sufficient to accept political conception as true or right, depending on what one's worldview allows, on the basis of whatever reasons one can muster, given one's worldview (doctrine). What political liberalism is interested in is a practical agreement on the political conception and not in our reasons for accepting it. There are deep issues (regarding deep values, purpose of life, metaphysics etc.) which cannot be resolved through invoking common reasons (this is (...)
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  2. The Separateness of Persons: Defending the Rawlsian Institutional Approach to Distributive Justice.Edward Andrew Greetis - forthcoming - Journal of Value Inquiry:1-23.
    The Rawlsian institutional approach holds that distributive principles apply to socioeconomic institutions rather than transactions within the institutional framework. Critics claim that the approach is baseless. I defend Rawls’s institutionalism by showing that it has a rational basis: Rawls “constructs” a theory of justice from considered judgments, especially ideas found in the political culture and historical conditions of democracy, including the fact of reasonable pluralism, which supports his institutionalism. I use Rawls’s “fact-sensitive constructivism” to interpret his claim that “utilitarianism does (...)
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  3. Incoherent but Reasonable: A Defense of Truth-Abstinence in Political Liberalism.Wes Siscoe & Alexander Schaefer - forthcoming - Social Theory and Practice.
    A strength of liberal political institutions is their ability to accommodate pluralism, both allowing divergent comprehensive doctrines as well as constructing the common ground necessary for diverse people to live together. A pressing question is how far such pluralism extends. Which comprehensive doctrines are simply beyond the pale and need not be accommodated by a political consensus? Rawls attempted to keep the boundaries of reasonable disagreement quite broad by infamously denying that political liberalism need make reference to the concept of (...)
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  4. Designing Realistic Utopia. Ideal Theory in Practical Political Philosophy.Jürgen Sirsch - 2020 - Baden-Baden, Deutschland: Nomos.
    Building on the work of John Rawls, this book offers a conception of ideal theory which provides practical guidance and a critical perspective on politics, institutions and society. The author develops this approach by discussing recent criticism of ideal theory by authors such as Amartya Sen and Raymond Geuss. Answering Sen’s criticism, the author proposes a novel account of feasibility in relation to ideal theory, especially with regard to ideal institutional design. As a reply to Geuss’ criticism, he discusses constructivist (...)
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  5. Principles of Justice and the Idea of Practice-Dependence.Johan Brännmark - 2019 - Ethics and Global Politics 12 (3):1-16.
  6. Constructivism, Representation, and Stability: Path-Dependence in Public Reason Theories of Justice.John Thrasher - 2019 - Synthese 196 (1):429-450.
    Public reason theories are characterized by three conditions: constructivism, representation, and stability. Constructivism holds that justification does not rely on any antecedent moral or political values outside of the procedure of agreement. Representation holds that the reasons for the choice in the model must be rationally explicable to real agents outside the model. Stability holds that the principles chosen in the procedure should be stable upon reflection, especially in the face of diversity in a pluralistic society. Choice procedures that involve (...)
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  7. Democratic Justice: The Priority of Politics and the Ideal of Citizenship.Valentina Gentile - 2017 - Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy 20 (2):211-221.
    In his Democratic justice and the social contract, Weale presents a distinctive contingent practice-dependent model of ‘democratic justice’ that relies heavily on a condition of just social and political relations among equals. Several issues arise from this account. Under which conditions might such just social and political relations be realised? What ideal of equality is required for ‘democratic justice’? What are its implications for the political ideal of citizenship? This paper focuses on these questions as a way to critically reconsider (...)
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  8. In Defence of Intelligible Reasons in Public Justification.Kevin Vallier - 2016 - Philosophical Quarterly 66 (264):596-616.
    Mainstream political liberalism holds that legal coercion is permissible only if it is based on reasons that all can share, access or accept. But these requirements are subject to well-known problems. I articulate and defend an intelligible reasons requirement as an alternative. An intelligible reason is a reason that all suitably idealized members of the public can see as a reason for the person who offers it according to that person’s own evaluative standards. It thereby permits reasons into public justification (...)
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  9. Diversity, Tolerance, and the Social Contract.Justin P. Bruner - 2015 - Politics, Philosophy and Economics 14 (4):429-448.
    Philosophers and social scientists have recently turned to game theory and agent-based models to better understand social contract formation. The stag hunt game is an idealization of social contract formation. Using the stag hunt game, we attempt to determine what, if any, barrier diversity is to the formation of an efficient social contract. We uncover a deep connection between tolerance, diversity, and the social contract. We investigate a simple model in which individuals possess salient traits and behave cooperatively when the (...)
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  10. Political Constructivism.Michael Buckley - 2015
    Political Constructivism Political Constructivism is a method for producing and defending principles of justice and legitimacy. It is most closely associated with John Rawls’ technique of subjecting our deliberations about justice to certain hypothetical constraints. Rawls argued that if all of us reason in the light of these conditions we could arrive at the same … Continue reading Political Constructivism →.
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  11. The Priority of Liberty: Rawls Versus Pogge.Edward Andrew Greetis - 2015 - Philosophical Forum 46 (2):227-245.
    Thomas Pogge argues that John Rawls’s priority of liberty rule is not constraining enough: it permits morally unacceptable restrictions of basic liberties. Because of this, Pogge claims that Rawls fails in his two central ambitions: to construct a moral conception that (1) opposes utilitarianism and (2) matches his judgments in reflective equilibrium. Pogge attributes this error to Rawls’s “purely recipient-oriented theorizing”—assessing a society’s basic structure based on how its citizens fare. I argue that Rawls’s theory does not allow restrictions of (...)
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  12. Konstruktywizm w metaetyce – perspektywa Arystotelesowska.Jacek Jaśtal - 2015 - Diametros 45:122-143.
    Recently, constructivism has become one of the most important movements in metaethics. According to metaethical constructivism, moral judgements do not refer to moral facts but are constructed as solutions to practical problems. At the same time this claim is not seen as incompatible with cognitive realism. A variant of metaethical constructivism, developed in opposition to the dominant Kantian branch, alludes to Aristotle’s practical philosophy. In this article I raise two issues. Firstly, I present a new version of the Aristotelian constructivism (...)
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  13. Giovanni Gentile and the State of Contemporary Constructivism: A Study of Actual Idealist Moral Theory.James Wakefield - 2015 - Imprint Academic.
    Recent moral philosophers have had little to say about Giovanni Gentile's 'actual idealism’, which is widely dismissed as a kind of obscurantist Hegelianism used to conceal flimsy justifications for the state’s total impunity over questions of morality and truth. While Gentile is increasingly recognised as a major figure in twentieth-century Italian culture, actual idealism itself has yet to be given a full and impartial philosophical appraisal. Giovanni Gentile and the State of Contemporary Constructivism represents the first book-length treatment of actual (...)
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  14. Ordering Anarchy.John Thrasher - 2014 - Rationality, Markets and Morals 5 (1):30-46.
    Ordered social life requires rules of conduct that help generate and preserve peaceful and cooperative interactions among individuals. The problem is that these social rules impose costs. They prohibit us from doing some things we might see as important and they require us to do other things that we might otherwise not do. The question for the contractarian is whether the costs of these social rules can be rationally justified. I argue that traditional contract theories have tended to underestimate the (...)
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  15. On Political Legitimacy, Reasonableness, and Perfectionism.Thomas M. Besch - 2013 - Public Reason 5 (1):58-74.
    The paper advances a non-orthodox reading of political liberalism’s view of political legitimacy, the view of public political justification that comes with it, and the idea of the reasonable at the heart of these views. Political liberalism entails that full discursive standing should be accorded only to people who are reasonable in a substantive sense. As the paper argues, this renders political liberalism dogmatic and exclusivist at the level of arguments for or against normative theories of justice. Against that background, (...)
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  16. The Construction of a Sustainable Development in Times of Climate Change.Eric Brandstedt - 2013 - Dissertation, Lund University
    This dissertation is a contribution to the debate about ‘climate justice’, i.e. a call for a just and feasible distribution of responsibility for addressing climate change. The main argument is a proposal for a cautious, practicable, and necessary step in the right direction: given the set of theoretical and practical obstacles to climate justice, we must begin by making contemporary development practices sustainable. In times of climate change, this is done by recognising and responding to the fact that emissions of (...)
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  17. Concepts, Conceptions, and Principles of Justice.Loren King - 2012 - Socialist Studies 8 (1):164-172.
    G.A. Cohen argues that Rawlsian constructivism mistakenly conflates principles of justice with optimal rules of regulation, a confusion that arises out of how Rawls has us think about justice. I use the concepts/conceptions distinction to argue that while citizens may reasonably disagree about the substance and demands of justice, some principled convergence may be possible: we can agree upon regulative principles consistent with justice, as each of us understands it. Rawlian constructivism helps us find that principled convergence, and this too (...)
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  18. A Defense of Political Constructivism.Nicholas Tampio - 2012 - Contemporary Political Theory 11 (3):305-323.
    In Political Liberalism, J. Rawls describes a meta-ethical procedure — political constructivism — whereby political theorists formulate political principles by assembling and reworking ideas from the public political culture. To many of his moral realist and moral constructivist critics, Rawls's procedure is simply a recent version of the “popular moral philosophy” that Kant excoriates in the Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals. I defend the idea of political constructivism on philosophical and political grounds. I argue that political constructivism is the (...)
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  19. Rawls, Islam, and Political Constructivism: Some Questions for Tampio.Andrew Valls - 2012 - Contemporary Political Theory 11 (3):324-330.
  20. Reconstructing Rawls: The Kantian Foundations of Justice as Fairness.Robert S. Taylor - 2011 - Pennsylvania State University Press.
    With the publication of A Theory of Justice in 1971, John Rawls not only rejuvenated contemporary political philosophy but also defended a Kantian form of Enlightenment liberalism called “justice as fairness.” Enlightenment liberalism stresses the development and exercise of our capacity for autonomy, while Reformation liberalism emphasizes diversity and the toleration that encourages it. These two strands of liberalism are often mutually supporting, but they conflict in a surprising number of cases, whether over the accommodation of group difference, the design (...)
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  21. The Structure of Justification in Political Constructivism.Michael Buckley - 2010 - Metaphilosophy 41 (5):669-689.
    Abstract: In this article the author develops the view, held by some, that political constructivism is best interpreted as a pragmatic enterprise aiming to solve political problems. He argues that this interpretation's structure of justification is best conceived in terms of two separate investigations—one develops a normative solution to a particular political problem by working up into a coherent whole certain moral conceptions of persons and society; and the other is an empirically based analysis of the political problem. The author (...)
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  22. Saving Identity From Postmodernism? The Normalization of Constructivism in International Relations.Nik Hynek & Gregory Fernando Pappas - 2010 - Contemporary Political Theory 9 (2):171-199.
    International Relations's intellectual history is almost always treated as a history of ideas in isolation from both those discursive and political economies which provide its disciplinary and wider context. This paper contributes to this wider analysis by focusing on the impact of the field's discursive economy. Specifically, using Foucaultian archaeologico-genealogical strategy of problematization to analyse the emergence and disciplinary trajectories of Constructivism in IR, this paper argues that Constructivism has been brought gradually closer to its mainstream Neo-utilitarian counterpart through a (...)
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  23. Justice, Constructivism, and The Egalitarian Ethos.A. Faik Kurtulmus - 2010 - Dissertation, University of Oxford
    This thesis defends John Rawls’s constructivist theory of justice against three distinct challenges. -/- Part one addresses G. A. Cohen’s claim that Rawls’s constructivism is committed to a mistaken thesis about the relationship between facts and principles. It argues that Rawls’s constructivist procedure embodies substantial moral commitments, and offers an intra-normative reduction rather than a metaethical account. Rawls’s claims about the role of facts in moral theorizing in A Theory of Justice should be interpreted as suggesting that some of our (...)
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  24. Book in Review: Rescuing Justice and Equality, by G. A. Cohen. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2008. 448 Pp. $45.00. [REVIEW]Jacob T. Levy - 2010 - Political Theory 38 (4):593-596.
  25. Saving Identity From Postmodernism|[Quest]| The Normalization of Constructivism in International Relations.Andrea Teti Nik Hynek - 2010 - Contemporary Political Theory 9 (2):171.
  26. Constructivism All the Way Down – Can O’Neill Succeed Where Rawls Failed?Kerstin Budde - 2009 - Contemporary Political Theory 8 (2):199-223.
    While universalist theories have come under increasing attack from relativist and post-modern critics, such as Walzer, MacIntyre and Rorty, Kantian constructivism can be seen as a saviour of universalist ethics. Kantian constructivists accept the criticism that past universalist theories were foundational and philosophically comprehensive and thus contestable, but dispute that universalist principles are unattainable. The question then arises if Kantian constructivism can deliver a non-foundational justification of universal principles. Rawls, the first Kantian constructivist, has seemingly retreated from the universalist ambitions (...)
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  27. Constructivism All the Way Down – Can O’Neill Succeed Where Rawls Failed?Kerstin Budde - 2009 - Contemporary Political Theory 8 (2):199.
    While universalist theories have come under increasing attack from relativist and post-modern critics, such as Walzer, MacIntyre and Rorty, Kantian constructivism can be seen as a saviour of universalist ethics. Kantian constructivists accept the criticism that past universalist theories were foundational and philosophically comprehensive and thus contestable, but dispute that universalist principles are unattainable. The question then arises if Kantian constructivism can deliver a non-foundational justification of universal principles. Rawls, the first Kantian constructivist, has seemingly retreated from the universalist ambitions (...)
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  28. Philosophy, Politics, Democracy: Selected Essays.Joshua Cohen - 2009 - Harvard University Press.
    Deliberation and democratic legitimacy -- Moral pluralism and political consensus -- Associations and democracy (with Joel Rogers) -- Freedom of expression -- Procedure and substance in deliberative democracy -- Directly-deliberative polyarchy (with Charles Sabel) -- Democracy and liberty -- Money, politics, political equality -- Privacy, pluralism, and democracy -- Reflections on deliberative democracy -- Truth and public reason.
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  29. Truth and Public Reason.Joshua Cohen - 2009 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 37 (1):2-42.
  30. Rawls and Cohen on Facts and Principles.A. Faik Kurtulmus - 2009 - Utilitas 21 (4):489-505.
    G. A. Cohen has recently argued for a thesis about the relationship between facts and principles. He claims that Rawls denies this thesis, and the truth of this thesis vitiates Rawls’s constructivist procedure. I argue against both claims by developing an account of Rawls’s justificatory strategy and the role of facts in this strategy, which I claim is similar to the role of facts in some defences of utilitarianism.
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  31. Constructivism and the English School.Christian Reus-Smit - 2009 - In Cornelia Navari (ed.), Theorising International Society: English School Methods. Palgrave-Macmillan.
  32. Two Principles of Broadcast Media Ownership for a Democratic Society.Michael Buckley - 2008 - Journal of Business Ethics 82 (4):821-834.
    Technological advances in media communications have raised questions about the appropriateness of media ownership rules for traditional TV and radio broadcast. This article contributes to this debate by defending a set of principles that ought to govern the distribution of broadcast spectrum. In particular, it defends principles reflecting the ‹public interest’ constraint currently informing broadcast media ownership rules, and argues against a free-market procedure for distributing spectrum use. The argument relies upon the application of a political constructivist approach typical to (...)
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  33. On the Very Idea of Cosmopolitan Justice: Constructivism and International Agency.Saladin Meckled-Garcia - 2008 - Journal of Political Philosophy 16 (3):245-271.
    Cosmopolitan critics attack the scope-limitation of justice of egalitarian liberal theorists to states. They treat justice as the production of a given set of outcomes for people regardless of location or relationship. However, in doing so they either ignore the relevant agent towards whom principles of justice are addressed or see the question of agency as a practical, derivative question, of a secondary character. This paper argues that a principle of justice without a clearly justified agent is not a genuine (...)
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  34. Justice and the Priority of Politics to Morality.Andrea Sangiovanni - 2008 - Journal of Political Philosophy 16 (2):137–164.
  35. Justice, Incentives and Constructivism.Andrew Williams - 2008 - Ratio 21 (4):476-493.
    In Rescuing Justice and Equality , G. A. Cohen reiterates his critique of John Rawls's difference principle as a justification for inequality-generating incentives, and also argues that Rawls's ambition to provide a constructivist defence of the first principles of justice is doomed. Cohen's arguments also suggest a natural response to my earlier attempt to defend the basic structure objection to Cohen's critique, which I term the alien factors reply. This paper criticises the reply, and Cohen's more general argument against Rawls's (...)
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  36. The Burdens of Public Justification: Constructivism, Contractualism, and Publicity.Samuel Freeman - 2007 - Politics, Philosophy and Economics 6 (1):5-43.
    The publicity of a moral conception is a central idea in Kantian and contractarian moral theory. Publicity carries the idea of general acceptability of principles through to social relations. Without publicity of its moral principles, the intuitive attractiveness of the contractarian ideal seems diminished. For it means that moral principles cannot serve as principles of practical reasoning and justification among free and equal persons. This article discusses the role of the publicity assumption in Rawls’s and Scanlon’s contractualism. I contend that (...)
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  37. Moral Actors and Political Spectators: On Some Virtues and Vices of Rawls's Liberalism.Giovanni De Grandis - 2007 - Politics and Ethics Review 3 (2):217-235.
    The paper defends the theoretical strength and consistency of Rawls's constructivism, showing its ability to articulate and convincingly weave together several key ethical ideas; yet it questions the political relevance of this admirable normative architecture. After having illustrated Rawls's conception of moral agency and practical reason, the paper tackles two criticisms raised by Scheffler. First the allegation of naturalism based on Rawls's disdain of common sense ideas on desert is rebutted. It is then shown that, contrary to Scheffler's contention, Rawls (...)
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  38. Political Constructivism.Peri Roberts - 2007 - Routledge.
    Introduction -- Constructivism and a theory of justice -- The constructivism of political liberalism -- Primary constructivism and O'Neill -- Reasoning practically: a constructivist understanding of practical reasoning -- Making practice reasonable: political constructivism.
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  39. Global Justice, Reciprocity, and the State.Andrea Sangiovanni - 2007 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 35 (1):3–39.
  40. Procedural Versus Substantive Justice: Rawls and Nozick.David Lewis Schaefer - 2007 - Social Philosophy and Policy 24 (1):164-186.
    This paper critically assesses the “procedural” accounts of political justice set forth by John Rawls in A Theory of Justice (1971) and Robert Nozick in Anarchy, State, and Utopia (1974). I argue that the areas of agreement between Rawls and Nozick are more significant than their disagreements. Even though Nozick offers trenchant criticisms of Rawls's argument for economic redistribution (the “difference principle”), Nozick's own economic libertarianism is undermined by his “principle of rectification,” which he offers as a possible ground in (...)
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  41. Rawls's Practical Conception of Justice: Opinion, Tradition and Objectivity in Political Liberalism.Alexander Kaufman - 2006 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 3 (1):23-43.
    In Political Liberalism, Rawls emphasizes the practical character and aims of his conception of justice. Justice as fairness is to provide the basis of a reasoned, informed and willing political agreement by locating grounds for consensus in the fundamental ideas and values of the political culture. Critics urge, however, that such a politically liberal conception of justice will be designed merely to ensure the stability of political institutions by appealing to the currently-held opinions of actual citizens. In order to evaluate (...)
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  42. Constructivism and Relativism in Oakeshott.Leslie Marsh - 2005 - In Corey Abel & Timothy Fuller (eds.), In The Intellectual Legacy of Michael Oakeshott. Imprint Academic.
    This paper highlights a troubling tension within the philosophy of Michael Oakeshott. The relativistic stance that informs his radical constructivism gives license to socio-political conclusions we know Oakeshott couldn’t possibly accept.
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  43. On Practical Constructivism and Reasonableness.Thomas M. Besch - 2004 - Dissertation, University of Oxford
    The dissertation defends that the often-assumed link between constructivism and universalism builds on non-constructivist, perfectionist grounds. To this end, I argue that an exemplary form of universalist constructivism – i.e., O’Neill’s Kantian constructivism – can defend its universalist commitments against an influential particularist form of constructivism – i.e., political liberalism as advanced by Rawls, Macedo, and Larmore – only if it invokes a perfectionist view of the good. (En route, I show why political liberalism is a form of particularism and (...)
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  44. The Post-9/11 State of Emergency: Reality Versus Rhetoric.Edmund F. Byrne - 2004 - Social Philosophy Today 19:193-215.
    After the 9/11 attacks the U.S. administration went beyond emergency response towards imperialism, but cloaked its agenda in the rhetoric of fighting ‘terrorists’ and ‘terrorism.’ After distinguishing between emergency thinking and emergency planning, I question the administration’s “war on terrorism” rhetoric in three stages. First, upon examining the post-9/11 antiterrorism discourse I find that it splits into two agendas: domestic, protect our infrastructure; and foreign, select military targets. Second, I review approaches to emergency planning already in place. Third, after reviewing (...)
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  45. On Rawls’s Distinction Between Perfect and Imperfect Procedural Justice.Martin Gustafsson - 2004 - Philosophy of the Social Sciences 34 (2):300-305.
    s distinction between perfect and imperfect procedural justice relies on the notion of a procedure that is guaranteed to lead to a certain independently specifiable result. Clarification of this notion shows that it makes the distinction between perfect and imperfect procedural justice unreal, in the following sense: whether, in a particular case, we have an instance of perfect or imperfect procedural justice depends only on how we choose to specify the procedure that is being followed. Key Words: procedural justice • (...)
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  46. Public Reason and the Moral Foundation of Liberalism.Jon Mahoney - 2004 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 1 (3):311-331.
    moral foundation of liberalism can be defended in one of three ways: (1) as a conception one accepts as a result of one’s affirmation of political liberalism, (2) as a conception one must affirm as a presupposition for political liberalism, or (3) as a philosophical truth about practical reason and persons. The first option makes it impossible to distinguish a moral consensus from a modus vivendi . The second renders the moral foundation of liberalism dogmatic because it affirms a moral (...)
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  47. 9 Constructivism in Rawls and Kant1.Onora O'neill - 2003 - In Samuel Richard Freeman (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to Rawls. Cambridge University Press. pp. 347.
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  48. The Cambridge Companion to Rawls.Samuel Freeman (ed.) - 2002 - Cambridge University Press.
    Each volume of this series of companions to major philosophers contains specially commissioned essays by an international team of scholars and will serve as a reference work for students and nonspecialists. John Rawls is the most significant and influential philosopher and moral philosopher of the twentieth century. His work has profoundly shaped contemporary discussions of social, political and economic justice in philosophy, law, political science, economics and other social disciplines. In this exciting collection of new essays, many of the world's (...)
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  49. Liberalism and the Defence of Political Constructivism.Catriona McKinnon - 2002 - Palgrave-Macmillan.
    Contemporary liberal political justification is often accused of preaching to the converted: liberal principles are acceptable only to people already committed to liberal values. Catriona McKinnon addresses this important criticism by arguing that self-respect and its social conditions should be placed at the heart of the liberal approach to justification. A commitment to self-respect delivers a commitment to the liberal values of toleration and public reason, but self-respect itself is not an exclusively liberal value.
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  50. Constructivism in International Relations: The Politics of Reality.Maja Zehfuss - 2002 - Cambridge University Press.
    Maya Zehfuss critiques constructivist theories of international relations (currently considered to be at the cutting edge of the discipline) and finds them wanting and even politically dangerous. Zehfuss uses Germany's first shift toward using its military abroad after the end of the Cold War to illustrate why constructivism does not work and how it leads to particular analytical outcomes and forecloses others. She argues that scholars are limiting their abilities to act responsibly in international relations by looking towards constructivism as (...)
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