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Liberalism and Distributive Justice

Samuel Freeman

Published in print September 2018 | ISBN: 9780190699260
Published online July 2018 | e-ISBN: 9780190699291 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oso/9780190699260.001.0001
Liberalism and Distributive Justice

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This volume of essays addresses a wide range of issues in contemporary political philosophy, from the different branches of liberalism and their relation to capitalism, to the basic institutions of a liberal society that underwrite political and economic justice. Samuel Freeman is a leading political philosopher and one of the foremost authorities on the works of John Rawls. This volume contains nine of his essays on liberalism, Rawls, and distributive justice. Freeman organizes his chapters into a narrative arc: from liberalism as the dominant political and economic system in the Western world, to the laws governing interpersonal transactions in a liberal society, to the broad social and political structures that determine distributive justice. Freeman analyzes the primary differences between the classical and high liberal traditions; shows why libertarianism is not a liberal view; argues for the social rather than global bases of distributive justice; demonstrates why Rawls’s difference principle supports a property-owning democracy rather than welfare-state capitalism; and shows how Rawls’s liberal principles of justice and the difference principle are to be applied in both ideal and non-ideal circumstances, effectively responding to criticisms by Amartya Sen, G. A. Cohen, and others.

Keywords: Rawls; liberalism; distributive justice; economic justice; social institutions; political institutions; political power

Book.  352 pages.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Social and Political Philosophy

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Table of Contents

Introduction in Liberalism and Distributive Justice

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Illiberal Libertarians in Liberalism and Distributive Justice

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