Chantal Mouffe on the Common Good

As I mentioned in the last post, Chantal Mouffe looks for a "third way" between Rawls-ian individualism and (what she understands to be) Sandel-ian collectivism. Mouffe spends considerable time adapting to the communitarian critique of liberalism, claiming, "liberalism's exclusive concern with individuals and their rights has not provided content and guidance for the exercise of … Continue reading Chantal Mouffe on the Common Good

Chantal Mouffe’s Critique of Michael Sandel

There's much I admire about Chantal Mouffe's work, which I'm sure I'll write about in the future... Here I want to talk about her critique of Michael Sandel. In an article entitled "American Liberalism and Its Communitarian Critics," Mouffe provides a survey of the liberal-communitarian debate. [1] After agreeing with Sandel's critique of Rawls (laid out … Continue reading Chantal Mouffe’s Critique of Michael Sandel

Honneth’s Reconstructive Theory of Justice

I might have over-stressed Honneth's break with procedural liberalism in my last post, casting Honneth's and procedural liberalism as contrasting theories. While it's true they're different, it's wrong to imply that Honneth wants to part ways entirely with Rawls and company. Rather, Honneth sees his "reconstructive theory" of justice as a development from procedural liberalism. Honneth claims … Continue reading Honneth’s Reconstructive Theory of Justice

Axel Honneth on the Material of Justice

In an essay entitled, "The Fabric of Justice: On the Limits of Contemporary Proceduralism" (in his recent collection The I in We: Studies in the Theory of Recognition) Axel Honneth explains where and why his Hegelian-inspired theory of recognition differs from procedural liberalism. Honneth argues (via Hegel's understanding of the emergence of self-consciousness) that autonomy is … Continue reading Axel Honneth on the Material of Justice

Sandel on Solidarity and Plurality

I'm still thinking through Michael Sandel's Liberalism and the Limits of Justice... While solidarity is not specifically a criticism Sandel levels at Rawls' A Theory of Justice, it is surely implied (and shows up in many communitarian critiques of liberalism). In one sense, by claiming that the state ought not be neutral on certain debates about the good, Sandel can … Continue reading Sandel on Solidarity and Plurality

Michael Sandel’s Liberalism and the Limits of Justice

*this is a quick review/summation of the book, really for my own good... Michael Sandel's Liberalism and the Limits of Justice (LLJ) is a response to John Rawls' A Theory of Justice (TOJ), which was at the time (1982) the most compelling and articulate vision of political liberalism. More specifically Sandel's book is an examination and critique of the philosophical … Continue reading Michael Sandel’s Liberalism and the Limits of Justice