Lectures on the History of Political Philosophy (Google eBook)

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Harvard University Press, Jun 30, 2009 - Philosophy - 496 pages
2 Reviews

This last book by the late John Rawls, derived from written lectures and notes for his long-running course on modern political philosophy, offers readers an account of the liberal political tradition from a scholar viewed by many as the greatest contemporary exponent of the philosophy behind that tradition.

Rawls's goal in the lectures was, he wrote, "to identify the more central features of liberalism as expressing a political conception of justice when liberalism is viewed from within the tradition of democratic constitutionalism." He does this by looking at several strands that make up the liberal and democratic constitutional traditions, and at the historical figures who best represent these strands--among them the contractarians Hobbes, Locke, and Rousseau; the utilitarians Hume, Sidgwick, and J. S. Mill; and Marx regarded as a critic of liberalism. Rawls's lectures on Bishop Joseph Butler also are included in an appendix. Constantly revised and refined over three decades, Rawls's lectures on these figures reflect his developing and changing views on the history of liberalism and democracy--as well as how he saw his own work in relation to those traditions.

With its clear and careful analyses of the doctrine of the social contract, utilitarianism, and socialism--and of their most influential proponents--this volume has a critical place in the traditions it expounds. Marked by Rawls's characteristic patience and curiosity, and scrupulously edited by his student and teaching assistant, Samuel Freeman, these lectures are a fitting final addition to his oeuvre, and to the history of political philosophy as well.

  

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Review: Lectures on the History of Political Philosophy: 0

User Review  - Michael Camilleri - Goodreads

If you're looking for a layman's primer on political philosophy this is not quite it. While Rawls introduces and contextualises each philosopher he discusses, it's important to recognise that these are still notes for a university-level course on philosophy. Read full review

Review: Lectures on the History of Political Philosophy: 0

User Review  - Michael - Goodreads

This book is very long but its very interesting and it taught me alot Read full review

Contents

IV
1
V
21
VI
23
VII
41
IX
54
XI
73
XII
94
XIII
101
XXXI
284
XXXII
297
XXXIII
314
XXXIV
317
XXXV
319
XXXVI
335
XXXVII
354
XXXVIII
375

XIV
103
XVI
122
XVIII
138
XX
157
XXI
159
XXII
174
XXIII
189
XXIV
191
XXV
214
XXVII
229
XXVIII
249
XXIX
251
XXX
266
XL
385
XLII
392
XLIII
412
XLV
416
XLVIII
422
L
432
LI
439
LIII
446
LV
452
LVI
458
LVII
460
Copyright

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About the author (2009)

John Rawls was James Bryant Conant University Professor at Harvard University. He was recipient of the 1999 National Humanities Medal.

Samuel Freeman is Professor of Philosophy and Law, University of Pennsylvania.

Bibliographic information