Reciprocity Arguments for Toleration

John Kilcullen

in Sincerity and Truth

Published in print July 1988 | ISBN: 9780198266914
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191683114 | DOI:
Reciprocity Arguments for Toleration

Show Summary Details


This chapter is a restatement of Bayle's strongest argument, called the ‘reciprocity’ argument, and a discussion of what arguments of that type are worth. The ‘reciprocity’ argument can be defined as an argument that shows that we should renounce what would otherwise have been (or seemed) a right or liberty because if we claim it and exercise it others will too, with evil results, whereas if we renounce it and accept certain contrary duties others may do so too, with good results. Such arguments have certain limitations, which also affect some similar arguments, such as John Rawls's argument for liberty of conscience and David Richards's appeal to ‘moral reciprocity’ in international economic relations.

Keywords: Bayle; reciprocity argument; right; liberty; John Rawls; David Richards

Chapter.  13201 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Religion

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.