Res Publica 27 (3):491-507 (2021)

Daniel Guillery
University of Warwick
A common objection to a proposal or theory in political philosophy is that it is not feasible to realise what it calls for. This is commonly taken to be sufficient to reject a proposal or theory: feasibility, on this common view, operates as a straightforward constraint on moral and political theory, whatever is not feasible is simply ruled out. This paper seeks to understand what we mean when we say that some proposal or outcome is or is not feasible. It will argue that no single binary definition can be given. Rather, there is a whole range of possible specifications of the term ‘feasible’, each of which selects a range of facts of the world to hold fixed. No single one of these possible specifications, though, is obviously privileged as giving the appropriate understanding of ‘feasibility’ tout court. The upshot of my account of feasibility, then, will be that the common view of feasibility as a straightforward constraint cannot be maintained: in order to reject a moral theory, it will not be sufficient simply to say that it is not feasible.
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DOI 10.1007/s11158-020-09497-7
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Anti-Luck Virtue Epistemology.Duncan Pritchard - 2012 - Journal of Philosophy 109 (3):247-279.
Human Nature and the Limits (If Any) of Political Philosophy.David Estlund - 2011 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 39 (3):207-237.
Understanding Political Feasibility.Holly Lawford-Smith - 2013 - Journal of Political Philosophy 21 (3):243-259.

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