An Introduction to Modern Political Theory by Norman P. Barry

By Norman P. Barry

Within the considerably revised 3rd version of this widely-used textbook Norman Barry presents a entire creation to modern political thought. The publication introduces the most issues and ideas in political debate in addition to the guidelines of up to date theorists together with Rawls, Hart, Dworkin, Nozick, and Hayek. This version gains large extra fabric at the debate among liberals and communitarians and an summary of the most positive aspects of feminist political proposal. Reviewers' reviews on prior variants: '...well worthy reading...up-to-date and finished' - Michael Laver, British ebook information '...a succinct creation no longer only to such smooth masters as Hayek, but in addition paintings performed in different disciplines...which has implications for political conception. It merits a large viewers' - Gillian Peele, instances academic complement

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To limit their role in these ways would, in fact, compromise liberal neutrality for it would arbitrarily privilege some purposes over others and provide a spurious legitimacy to an initially random distribution of resources. Although both sorts of liberalism might share some concepts, such as freedom, equality, individuality, personal autonomy and a more or less non-intrusive role for the state in the private world, their differing conceptions of these desiderata generate radically differing policy agendas.

For example, the laws of consumer behaviour can be used to predict that if the government subsidises the rent of council housing the demand for such housing will go up and queues will develop for council housing; this is a theoretical inference of what must happen if certain generalisations are true and if certain initial conditions are met. While such 'laws' are not derived from 'facts', most liberal-rationalists maintain that the general predictions derived from their theories can be tested empirically.

1987, pp. 4-5). However, there has been in recent years a subtly different objection to the aims of analytical political philosophy. The argument here relates to the alleged impossibility of elucidating a perfectly 'neutral' set of political concepts, that is, constructing meanings of key words which betray no particular general philosophical or ethical view of the world. The idea of a neutral political vocabulary is common to both positivists and linguistic philosophers, no matter how much they may differ as to how it is to be constructed.

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