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John Rawls
John Bordley Rawls (; February 21, 1921 – November 24, 2002) was an American moral, legal and political philosopher in the liberal tradition. Rawls received both the Schock Prize for Logic and Philosophy and the National Humanities Medal in 1999, the latter presented by President Bill Clinton, in recognition of how Rawls's work "revived the disciplines of political and ethical philosophy with his argument that a society in which the most fortunate help the least fortunate is not only a moral society but a logical one". In 1990, Will Kymlicka wrote in his introduction to the field that "it is generally accepted that the recent rebirth of normative political philosophy began with the publication of John Rawls's ''A Theory of Justice'' in 1971". Rawls has often been described as one of the most influential political philosophers of the 20th century. He has the unusual distinction among contemporary political philosophers of being frequently cited by the courts of law in the Un ...
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Baltimore, Maryland
Baltimore ( , locally: or ) is the List of municipalities in Maryland, most populous city in the U.S. state of Maryland, fourth most populous city in the Mid-Atlantic (United States), Mid-Atlantic, and List of United States cities by population, the 30th most populous city in the United States with a population of 585,708 in 2020. Baltimore was designated an Independent city (United States), independent city by the Constitution of Maryland in 1851, and today is the most populous independent city in the United States. As of 2021, the population of the Baltimore metropolitan area was estimated to be 2,838,327, making it the List of metropolitan areas of the United States, 20th largest metropolitan area in the country. Baltimore is located about north northeast of Washington, D.C., making it a principal city in the Washington–Baltimore combined statistical area, Washington–Baltimore combined statistical area (CSA), the third-largest combined statistical area, CSA in the nat ...
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Property-owning Democracy
A property-owning democracy is a social system whereby state institutions enable a fair distribution of productive property across the populace generally, rather than allowing monopolies to form and dominate.Amrit Ron, "Visions of Democracy in 'Property-Owning Democracy': Skelton to Rawls and Beyond", ''History of Political Thought'' 29, no. 1 (2008), 168–187, . This intends to ensure that all individuals have a fair and equal opportunity to participate in the market. It is thought that this system is necessary to break the constraints of welfare-state capitalism and manifest a cooperation of citizens, who each hold equal political power and potential for economic advancement.Alan Thomas, ''Republic of Equals: Predistribution and Property-Owning Democracy'' (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016). This form of societal organisation was popularised by John Rawls, as the most effective structure amongst four other competing systems: laissez-faire capitalism, welfare-state cap ...
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Saul Alinsky
Saul David Alinsky (January 30, 1909 – June 12, 1972) was an American community activist and political theorist. His work through the Chicago-based Industrial Areas Foundation helping poor communities organize to press demands upon landlords, politicians, bankers and business leaders won him national recognition and notoriety. Responding to the impatience of a New Left generation of activists in the 1960s, in his widely cited ''Rules for Radicals: A Pragmatic Primer'' (1971) Alinsky defended the arts both of confrontation and of compromise involved in community organizing as keys to the struggle for social justice. Beginning in the 1990s, Alinsky's reputation was revived by commentators on the political Right as a source of tactical inspiration for the Republican Tea Party Movement and, subsequently, by virtue of indirect associations with both Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, as the alleged source of a radical Democratic political agenda. While criticised on the politic ...
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Socrates
Socrates (; ; –399 BC) was a Greek philosopher from Athens who is credited as the founder of Western philosophy and among the first moral philosophers of the ethical tradition of thought. An enigmatic figure, Socrates authored no texts and is known mainly through the posthumous accounts of classical writers, particularly his students Plato and Xenophon. These accounts are written as dialogues, in which Socrates and his interlocutors examine a subject in the style of question and answer; they gave rise to the Socratic dialogue literary genre. Contradictory accounts of Socrates make a reconstruction of his philosophy nearly impossible, a situation known as the Socratic problem. Socrates was a polarizing figure in Athenian society. In 399 BC, he was accused of impiety and corrupting the youth. After a trial that lasted a day, he was sentenced to death. He spent his last day in prison, refusing offers to help him escape. Plato's dialogues are among the most co ...
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Aristotle
Aristotle (; grc-gre, Ἀριστοτέλης ''Aristotélēs'', ; 384–322 BC) was a Greek philosopher and polymath during the Classical period in Ancient Greece. Taught by Plato, he was the founder of the Peripatetic school of philosophy within the Lyceum and the wider Aristotelian tradition. His writings cover many subjects including physics, biology, zoology, metaphysics, logic, ethics, aesthetics, poetry, theatre, music, rhetoric, psychology, linguistics, economics, politics, meteorology, geology, and government. Aristotle provided a complex synthesis of the various philosophies existing prior to him. It was above all from his teachings that the West inherited its intellectual lexicon, as well as problems and methods of inquiry. As a result, his philosophy has exerted a unique influence on almost every form of knowledge in the West and it continues to be a subject of contemporary philosophical discussion. Little is known about his life. Aristotle was ...
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Plato
Plato ( ; grc-gre, Πλάτων ; 428/427 or 424/423 – 348/347 BC) was a Greek philosopher born in Athens during the Classical period in Ancient Greece. He founded the Platonist school of thought and the Academy, the first institution of higher learning on the European continent. Along with his teacher, Socrates, and his student, Aristotle, Plato is a central figure in the history of Ancient Greek philosophy and the Western and Middle Eastern philosophies descended from it. He has also shaped religion and spirituality. The so-called neoplatonism of his interpreter Plotinus greatly influenced both Christianity (through Church Fathers such as Augustine) and Islamic philosophy (through e.g. Al-Farabi). In modern times, Friedrich Nietzsche diagnosed Western culture as growing in the shadow of Plato (famously calling Christianity "Platonism for the masses"), while Alfred North Whitehead famously said: "the safest general characterization of the European philosophical tradit ...
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Thomas Hobbes
Thomas Hobbes ( ; 5/15 April 1588 – 4/14 December 1679) was an English philosopher, considered to be one of the founders of modern political philosophy. Hobbes is best known for his 1651 book ''Leviathan'', in which he expounds an influential formulation of social contract theory. In addition to political philosophy, Hobbes contributed to a diverse array of other fields, including history, jurisprudence, geometry, theology, and ethics, as well as philosophy in general. Biography Early life Thomas Hobbes was born on 5 April 1588 (Old Style), in Westport, now part of Malmesbury in Wiltshire, England. Having been born prematurely when his mother heard of the coming invasion of the Spanish Armada, Hobbes later reported that "my mother gave birth to twins: myself and fear." Hobbes had a brother, Edmund, about two years older, as well as a sister named Anne. Although Thomas Hobbes's childhood is unknown to a large extent, as is his mother's name, it is known that H ...
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Desert (philosophy)
Desert () in philosophy is the condition of being deserving of something, whether good or bad. It is sometimes called moral desert to clarify the intended usage and distinguish it from the dry desert biome. It is a concept often associated with justice: that good deeds should be rewarded and evil deeds punished. Nomenclature The English words "deserve" and "desert" derive from the Old French ''deservir'' (modern French: ''desservir''), which has the same meaning. While "deserve" is common as a verb, the noun result "desert" is rare in colloquial speech; it is almost exclusively used in the phrase "just deserts" (e.g. "Although she was not at first arrested for the crime, she later on received her just deserts."). The alternate spelling "just desserts" is a pun on this original term. In ordinary usage, to deserve is to earn or merit a reward or penalty. In moral philosophy, the additional distinction is generally drawn that the result is morally relevant somehow. For exampl ...
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Telishment
Telishment is an act by the authorities of punishing a suspect in order to deter future wrongdoers, even though they know that the suspect is innocent. If supporters of these theories believe in the effectiveness of telishment as a deterrent, opponents claim that they must bite the bullet and also hold that telishment is ethically justified. See also *The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas "The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas" is a 1973 work of short philosophical fiction by American writer Ursula K. Le Guin. With deliberately both vague and vivid descriptions, the narrator depicts a summer festival in the utopian city of Omelas, ... Sources *{{cite book, editor1-last=Audi, editor1-first=Robert, title= The Cambridge Dictionary of Philosophy, year=1995, publisher=Cambridge University Press, location=Cambridge; New York, isbn=0-521-40224-7, pages=791–792 Ethics Utilitarianism Punishment ...
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Primary Goods
Primary goods are presented in the book ''A Theory of Justice'' (1971) written by the American philosopher John Rawls. In the first edition of the ''Theory of Justice'', these goods are supposed to be desirable for every human being, just as they are also useful for them. Thus, primary goods are the common base for the unanimous selection of the justice principle in the original position. Primary goods are subdivided in two categories: * ''Natural primary goods'': this category includes intelligence, imagination, health, speed etc. * ''Social primary goods'': this category includes rights (civil rights and political rights), liberties, income and wealth, the social bases of self-respect, etc. In the second edition of the ''Theory of Justice'', primary goods are stated to be those that the citizens need as free people and as members of the society. See also * John Rawls * Welfarism * Utilitarianism In ethical philosophy, utilitarianism is a family of normative ethical theor ...
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Liberal Socialism
Liberal socialism is a political philosophy that incorporates liberal principles to socialism. This synthesis sees liberalism as the political theory that takes the inner freedom of the human spirit as a given and adopts liberty as the goal, means and rule of shared human life. Socialism is seen as the method to realize this recognition of liberty through political and economic autonomy and emancipation from the grip of pressing material necessity. Liberal socialism has been particularly prominent in British and Italian politics. Its seminal ideas can be traced to John Stuart Mill, who theorised that capitalist societies should experience a gradual process of socialisation through worker-controlled enterprises, coexisting with private enterprises. Mill rejected centralised models of socialism that he thought might discourage competition and creativity, but he argued that representation is essential in a free government and democracy could not subsist if economic opportu ...
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Deliberative Democracy
Deliberative democracy or discursive democracy is a form of democracy in which deliberation is central to decision-making. It adopts elements of both consensus decision-making and majority rule. Deliberative democracy differs from traditional democratic theory in that authentic deliberation, not mere voting, is the primary source of legitimacy for the law. Deliberative democracy is closely related to consultative democracy, in which public consultation with citizens is central to democratic processes. While deliberative democracy is generally seen as some form of an amalgam of representative democracy and direct democracy, the actual relationship is usually open to dispute. Some practitioners and theorists use the term to encompass representative bodies whose members authentically and practically deliberate on legislation without unequal distributions of power, while others use the term exclusively to refer to decision-making directly by lay citizens, as in direct democracy ...
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