Rawls Reading 322 - A Theory of Justice A Theory of Justice...

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A Theory of Justice A Theory of Justice is a book of political and moral philosophy by John Rawls. It was originally published in 1971. In A Theory of Justice , Rawls attempts to solve the problem of distributive justice by utilizing a variant of the familiar device of the social contract. The resultant theory is known as "Justice as Fairness", from which Rawls derives his two famous principles of justice: the liberty principle and the difference principle . Objective Rawls' primary objective in A Theory of Justice is to provide a solution to the problem of political obligation or, to put it in another way, to explain how it is and under what circumstances citizens are obliged to obey the laws which the state creates. He does this through the device of a hypothetical agreement, made under conditions of equality so that there are no disparities in bargaining power. This justifies the coercive use of state power because, guided by it, a state would take a form which all would, under conditions of freedom, consent to. Rawls called this theory Justice as Fairness. The "original position" Like Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau and Kant, Rawls belongs to the social contract tradition. However, Rawls' social contract takes a slightly different form from that of previous thinkers. Specifically, Rawls develops what he claims are principles of justice through the use of an entirely and deliberately artificial device he calls the Original position , in which everyone decides principles of justice from behind a veil of ignorance . This "veil" is one that essentially blinds people to all facts about themselves that might cloud what notion of justice is developed. "no one knows his place in society, his class position or social status, nor does
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Rawls Reading 322 - A Theory of Justice A Theory of Justice...

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