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Descrizione dell’editore

Realist political philosophers argue that the abstract character of Rawlsian political philosophy has left it floating free of any connection with "real politics." Bernard Williams's political realism is premised on the rejection of political moralism, which Williams understands as the idea that the moral is prior to the political and that political philosophy is applied morality) Raymond Geuss concurs, directing his critique of moralism at Rawls in particular and specifically at Rawls's Kantian conception of ideal theory. Geuss concludes that the putative failure of ideal theory to provide guidance for how to negotiate "real politics" is "not a criticism of some individual aspect of Rawls's theory, but a basic repudiation of his whole way of approaching the subject of political philosophy." (2) Of course criticism of the abstract and idealistic character of Rawls's political philosophy is not new; it featured prominently in communitarian critiques of Rawls. But when such criticism has been acknowledged as having force, it has often been taken to imply that theories of justice should be contextualist rather than universalist, not as challenging the fundamental aspirations of normative theorizing) The realist critique cuts deeper because it calls into question the relevance, and thereby the coherence, of the project of normative political theorizing in whatever form. It is important because it prompts political philosophers to consider reflexively the relationship between theory and practice. Underlying Williams's critique of political moralism is the broader contention that analytical philosophy has been "notably ill-equipped among philosophies ... for reflexively raising questions of its own relations to social reality." (4) A fundamental theme in the work of Williams and Geuss, and of John Dunn, is that a political theory cannot achieve the same kind of objectivity as a scientific theory. (5) Since politics is not, and cannot be, a neutral vehicle for putting moral judgments into practice, political judgment cannot be a matter of subsuming individual cases under moral principles, but is rather a matter of the actions of real political actors within real institutional contexts.

Religione e spiritualità
1 gennaio
Social Theory and Practice-Florida State University

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