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Vol 23 No 6 June/July 2018

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Foundations of Liberalism

Margaret MooreAssistant Professor, Department of Political Science, York University, Ontario, Canada

ISBN13: 9780198273851
ISBN: 0198273851
Published: June 1994
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Format: Hardback
Price: £122.50



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This book is an original critique of contemporary liberal theories of justice, focusing on the problem of how to relate the personal point of view of the individual to the impartial perspective of justice.;Margaret Moore's examination of prominent contemporary arguments for liberal justice reveals that individualist theories are subject to two serious difficulties: the motivation problem and the integrity problem. Individualists cannot explain why the individual should be motivated to act in accordance with the dictates of liberal justice, andDSrelated to thisDSoffer radically incoherent accounts of the person. Revisionist liberal attempts to ground liberalism in contextual and perfectionist;terms offer more defensible foundations, but Dr Moore argues that such theories do not support liberal political principles.;She concludes by sketching a historical and concrete approach to political and ethical theorizing which reformulates the relation between self-interest and morality, and is not subject to the problems that beset liberal individualist theories of justice. Her book advances the debate between communitarians and liberals about the kind of moral foundation which a liberal society requires.

Contents:
Introduction; I: Individualist Liberal Theories; Gewirth and the argument from entailment; Rawls and the abstract contract; II: Revisionist Liberal Theories; Contextual arguments for liberalism; Perfectionist arguments for liberalism; III: An Alternative Foundation: An alternative foundation for political and ethical principles; Bibliography.