Putting Liberalism in Its Place
Princeton University Press, 2009 M01 10 - 336 páginas
In this wide-ranging interdisciplinary work, Paul W. Kahn argues that political order is founded not on contract but on sacrifice. Because liberalism is blind to sacrifice, it is unable to explain how the modern state has brought us to both the rule of law and the edge of nuclear annihilation. We can understand this modern condition only by recognizing that any political community, even a liberal one, is bound together by faith, love, and identity.
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Lacking a conviction in the absolute truth of our own beliefs and practices, we are uncertain how to respond to those who live by different norms. We are all too aware that such differences exist, as we interact with cultures that put ...
Rather, we have radically different understandings of the appropriate social norms and, consequently, very different expectations of politics. Europeans may be drawing together in a common political and moral order, but much of the rest ...
Individuals and groups are free to live as they wish, as long as they respect fundamental norms protective of individual dignity. This still leaves a wide range within which ordinary political forces, as well as individuals, ...
With respect to these groups, we inevitably feel a double-pull: an instinct toward charitable toleration—it seems to cost us little to tolerate difference—and an opposite impulse toward the universalization of norms.
We can articulate a set of universal values and supporting norms, against which cultural practices and belief systems are to be measured. This is the approach pursued by contemporary advocates of human-rights law.
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