John Rawls – A Theory of Justice

As the Economists’ Hour has come to an end, the philosophy of Rawls offers a tempting philosophy to guide public policy. Rawls wrote A Theory of Justice before the emergence of neoliberalism, but his ideas anticipate its arrival. The aim of his theory is to offer an alternative to utilitarian or consequentialist philosophy. Utilitarianism is... Continue Reading →

Chantal Mouffe – The Return of the Political

The final chapter of the political science classic, Political Man, was titled “The End of Ideology?” He refers to a conference in 1955 called “The Future of Freedom.” It assembled political thinkers from a diverse range of viewpoints. It included conservatives, socialists and liberals, but there was little political debate. There “was general agreement among... Continue Reading →

A. C. Grayling – The Good State

The line between political science and philosophy is not always clear. Sometimes I find I pretend I am a political philosopher, while other times I imagine I am a political scientist. Political theory is perhaps a delicate balance between the two. And yet there are some who focus more on philosophy and others who rely... Continue Reading →

Roslyn Fuller – In Defence of Democracy

The basic meaning of democracy for Roslyn Fuller is not theoretical. She has a visceral attachment to its value and importance which she feels is embedded within the Western cultural tradition. Its meaning is therefore both evident and apparent. Yet she is not a conservative. She senses deep issues within the current framework of democratic... Continue Reading →

Francis Fukuyama – Our Posthuman Future

Francis Fukuyama’s fourth book seems out of place. It does not neatly fit into the canon of political science. Fukuyama admits as much. His preface reads like something between an apology and an explanation. His first words read, “Writing a book on biotechnology might seem to be quite a leap for someone who in recent... Continue Reading →

Aristotle – Politics

Aristotle continues to reverberate through modern politics. It is an irony of modernization that the transition into the Renaissance out of the Middle Ages diminished the influence of Aristotle in favor of Plato. Yet political modernization has gradually shifted Aristotle back into prominence. The political philosophy of Plato is a dreamy kind of idealism no... Continue Reading →

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