A Theory of Justice
John Rawls aims to express an essential part of the common core of the democratic tradition—justice as fairness—and to provide an alternative to utilitarianism, which had dominated the Anglo-Saxon tradition of political thought since the nineteenth century. Rawls substitutes the ideal of the social contract as a more satisfactory account of the basic rights and liberties of citizens as free and equal persons. “Each person,” writes Rawls, “possesses an inviolability founded on justice that even the welfare of society as a whole cannot override.” Advancing the ideas of Rousseau, Kant, Emerson, and Lincoln, Rawls’s theory is as powerful today as it was when first published. Though the revised edition of A Theory of Justice, published in 1999, is the definitive statement of Rawls’s view, much of the extensive literature on his theory refers to the original. This first edition is available for scholars and serious students of Rawls’s work.
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Men can agree to this description of just institutions since the notions of an arbitrary distinction and of a proper balance , which are included in the concept of justice , are left open for each to interpret according to the ...
In these preliminary remarks I have distinguished the concept of justice as meaning a proper balance between competing claims from a conception of justice as a set of related principles for identifying the relevant considerations which ...
Since each desires to protect his interests , his capacity to advance his conception of the good , no one has a reason to acquiesce in an enduring loss for himself in order to bring about a greater net balance of satisfaction .
The main idea is that society is rightly ordered , and therefore just , when its major institutions are arranged so as to achieve the greatest net balance of satisfaction summed over all the individuals belonging to it . 8.
For consider : each man in realizing his own interests is certainly free to balance his own losses against his own gains . We may impose a sacrifice on ourselves now for the sake of a greater advantage later .
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Review: A Theory of JusticeUser Review - Alex L - Goodreads
BLEH. Never taking a political theory class again. But this book was rather odd...i liked the ideas he proposed, but it wasn't as enjoyable of a read as i thought it would be. Not really my subject matter. Read full review