Personal Responsibility: Why It Matters

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A&C Black, Nov 30, 2009 - Philosophy - 214 pages
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Personal responsibility is now very much on the political agenda. But what is personal responsibility? Why do we care about it? And what, if anything, should governments do to promote it?

This book explores the idea that individuals bear a special responsibility for the success or failure of their own lives looking at philosophical theories, political ideologies, and public opinion on the subject. Alexander Brown lends support to a recent move in political philosophy to deal with real world problems and shows how philosophy can contribute to public democratic debate on pressing issues of personal responsibility. Articulate, provocative, and stimulating, this timely book will make a significant contribution to one of the most important debates of our time.

 

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Contents

Introduction
1
What is Personal Responsibility?
13
What Do Philosophers Think? Part I
31
What Do Philosophers Think? Part II
58
What Do Politicians Think?
77
What Do Ordinary People Think?
112
Four Contemporary Issues in Focus
133
So How Do We Decide?
162
Conclusion
177
Notes
181
Bibliography
197
Index
210
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About the author (2009)

Alexander Brown is a Teaching Fellow in Political Theory at the School of Public Policy, University College London, UK. He is the author of Ronald Dworkin's Theory of Equality (Forthcoming, Palgrave Macmillan).

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