A Theory of Justice

Front Cover
Oxford University Press, 1999 - Ethics - 538 pages
16 Reviews
In this work the author argues that the correct principles of justice are those that would be agreed to by free and rational persons, placed in the original position behind a veil of ignorance: not knowing their own place in society; their class, race, or sex; their abilities, intelligence, or strengths; or even their conception ofthe good. Accordingly, he derives two principles of justice to regulate the distribution of liberties, and of social and economic goods. In this new edition the work is presented as Rawls himself wishes it to be transmitted to posterity, with numerous minor revisions and amendments and a new Preface in which Rawls reflects on his presentation of his thesis and explains how and why he has revised it.
 

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
8
4 stars
5
3 stars
2
2 stars
1
1 star
0

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - MashaK99 - LibraryThing

I read this one quite a while ago in college, back when I was in the process of choosing which Western political philosophy is most aligned with my views. My prof recommended this one as a companion ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - HadriantheBlind - LibraryThing

A long involved theory of justice - create a society where you would be treated fairly, if you do not know what position you would occupy in such a society. Read full review

Contents

I
xi
II
xvii
III
1
IV
3
V
47
VI
102
VII
169
VIII
171
IX
228
X
293
XI
345
XII
347
XIII
397
XIV
450
Copyright

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

References to this book

Development as Freedom
Amartya Sen
No preview available - 1999
Development as Freedom
Amartya Sen
No preview available - 1999
All Book Search results »

About the author (1999)

John Rawls, professor of philosophy at Harvard University, had published a number of articles on the concept of justice as fairness before the appearance of his magnum opus, A Theory of Justice (1971). While the articles had won for Rawls considerable prestige, the reception of his book thrust him into the front ranks of contemporary moral philosophy. Presenting a Kantian alternative to conventional utilitarianism and intuitionism, Rawls offers a theory of justice that is contractual and that rests on principles that he alleges would be accepted by free, rational persons in a state of nature, that is, of equality. The chorus of praise was loud and clear. Stuart Hampshire acclaimed the book as "the most substantial and interesting contribution to moral philosophy since the war."H. A. Bedau declared: "As a work of close and original scholarship in the service of the dominant moral and political ideology of our civilization, Rawls's treatise is simply without a rival." Rawls historically achieved two important things: (1) He articulated a coherent moral philosophy for the welfare state, and (2) he demonstrated that analytic philosophy was most capable of doing constructive work in moral philosophy. A Theory of Justice has become the most influential work in political, legal, and social philosophy by an American author in the twentieth century.

Bibliographic information