Oxford University Press (2010)

Nicholas Southwood
Australian National University
Contractualism has a venerable history and considerable appeal. Yet as an account of the foundations or ultimate grounds of morality it has been thought by many philosophers to be subject to fatal objections. This book argues otherwise. It begins by detailing and diagnosing the shortcomings of the main existing models of contractualism, “Hobbesian” contractualism (or contractarianism) and “Kantian” contractualism. It then proposes a novel, "deliberative" model, based on an interpersonal, deliberative conception of practical reason. It argues that the deliberative model of contractualism represents an attractive alternative to its more familiar rivals and that it has the resources to offer a more compelling account of morality’s foundations, one that can do justice to the twin demands of moral accuracy and explanatory adequacy.
Keywords contractualism  contractarianism  deliberative contractualism  Kantian contractualism  Hobbesian contractualism  morality
Categories (categorize this paper)
Reprint years 2011, 2013
Buy this book $31.22 new (24% off)   $31.23 used (24% off)   $40.95 from Amazon    Amazon page
Call number BJ1500.C65.S68 2010
ISBN(s) 9780199539659   0199539650   9780199664658   019966465X
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 71,436
External links

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.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Norms and Conventions.Nicholas Southwood & Lina Eriksson - 2011 - Philosophical Explorations 14 (2):195 - 217.
Contractualism.Jussi Suikkanen - forthcoming - In Michael Hemmingsen (ed.), Ethical Theory in Global Perspective. New York, NY, USA: SUNY Press.
Contractualism.Jussi Suikkanen - 2020 - Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

View all 20 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

A Deliberative Model of Contractualism.Nicholas Southwood - 2008 - Politics, Philosophy and Economics 7 (2):183-208.
Moral Contractualism.Nicholas Southwood - 2009 - Philosophy Compass 4 (6):926-937.
What We Owe to Distant Others.Leif Wenar - 2003 - Politics, Philosophy and Economics 2 (3):283-304.
Contractarianism, Contractualism.Stephen Darwell (ed.) - 2002 - Wiley-Blackwell.
Of Metaethics and Motivation: The Appeal of Contractualism.Pamela Hieronymi - 2011 - In R. Jay Wallace, Rahul Kumar & Samuel Richard Freeman (eds.), Reasons and Recognition: Essays on the Philosophy of T. M. Scanlon. Oxford University Press.
Contractualism, Reciprocity, Compensation.David Alm - 2007 - Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy 2 (3):1-23.


Added to PP index

Total views
123 ( #96,361 of 2,520,355 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
4 ( #166,836 of 2,520,355 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes