rawls 1997 - the idea of public reason revisited

rawls 1997 - the idea of public reason revisited -...

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+ 2 (,1 1/,1( Citation: 64 U. Chi. L. Rev. 765 1997 Content downloaded/printed from HeinOnline (http://heinonline.org) Wed Jan 26 14:36:24 2011 -- Your use of this HeinOnline PDF indicates your acceptance of HeinOnline's Terms and Conditions of the license agreement available at http://heinonline.org/HOL/License -- The search text of this PDF is generated from uncorrected OCR text. -- To obtain permission to use this article beyond the scope of your HeinOnline license, please use: https://www.copyright.com/ccc/basicSearch.do? &operation=go&searchType=0 &lastSearch=simple&all=on&titleOrStdNo=0041-9494
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University of Chicago Law Review Volume 64 Summer 1997 Number 3 © 1997 by The University of Chicago The Idea of Public Reason Revisited John Rawlst INTRODUCTION The idea of public reason, as I understand it,' belongs to a conception of a well ordered constitutional democratic society. The form and content of this reason-the way it is understood by citizens and how it interprets their political relationship-is part of the idea of democracy itself. This is because a basic feature of democracy is the fact of reasonable pluralism-the fact that a t Emeritus Professor of Philosophy, Harvard University. This essay is a revision of a lecture given at The University of Chicago Law School in November 1993. I should like to thank Joshua Cohen, Erin Kelly, Percy Lehning, Michael Perry, Margaret Rawls, and T.M. Scanlon for their great help and advice in writing this paper. Throughout they have given me numerous suggestions, which I have gladly accepted. Above all, to Burton Dre- ben I am especially indebted: as so often before, he has been generous beyond measure in his efforts; in every section he has helped me reorganize and reshape the text, giving it a clarity and simplicity it would not otherwise have had. Without their constant advice and encouragement, and that of others mentioned below, I never could have completed the revisions of my original lecture. 1 See John Rawls, Political Liberalism, lecture VI, § 8.5 (Columbia paperback ed 1996). References to Political Liberalism are given by lecture and section; page numbers are also provided unless the reference refers to an entire lecture, section, or subsection. Note that the 1996 paperback edition of Political Liberalism contains a new second intro- duction which, among other things, tries to make clearer certain aspects of political liber- alism. Section 5 of this introduction, id at 1-1vii, discusses the idea of public reason and sketches several changes I now make in affirming this idea. These are all followed and elaborated in what is presented here and are important to a complete understanding of the argument. Note also that the pagination of the paperback edition is the same as the original. HeinOnline -- 64 U. Chi. L. Rev.
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