Since it appeared in 1971, John Rawls's A Theory of Justice
has become a classic. The author has now revised the original edition to clear up a number of difficulties he and others have found in the original book. 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 19th 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. --Christine Buttery
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
John Rawls draws on the most subtle techniques of contemporary analytic philosophy to provide the social contract tradition with what is, from a philosophical point of view at least, the most formidable defense it has yet received ...[and] makes available the powerful intellectual resources and the comprehensive approach that have so far eluded antiutilitarians. -- Marshall Cohen New York Times Book Review I mean ...to press my recommendation of [this book] to non-philosophers, especially those holding positions of responsibility in law and government. For the topic with which it deals is central to this country's purposes, and the misunderstanding of that topic is central to its difficulties. -- Peter Caws New Republic The most substantial and interesting contribution to moral philosophy since the war. -- Stuart Hampshire New York Review of Books