Social Contract Theory


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Social Contract Theory

The theory that morality is a manifestation of the mutual consent of all persons involved in a society. For example, murder is wrong according to social contract theory because society has generally agreed that it would not be conducive to prosperous relations, and not because it is wrong in and of itself. Social contract theory is used in government as one of the foundations of the modern state. "Government by consent of the governed," one of the most fundamental ideas of democracy, has its origins in social contract theory.
References in periodicals archive ?
The concept of mutual benefit is deeply related to the Enlightenment political philosophy of the social contract theory.
This standard is based on social contract theory and the principles of justice and equal protection of the law.
In Rawls's work, then, as in that of his predecessors, social contract theory corresponded to the legal structures of the state, which now through taxation appropriated wealth and redistributed it in the form of property.
we can see that the ethical theory of rights-in-social-relations would justify a quite different answer from the one given by social contract theory.
88) A "social contract" to explain human organization was no more rational to the Social Darwinist than was a social contract theory to explain the high level of social organization that can be observed among bees or beavers, or the herding instincts of cows or geese.
The concept of informed consent plays a central role in many areas of modern ethical and political thought, from social contract theory to sexual ethics.
She covers the recent crises in refugee policies, the concepts of liberal universalism, internal coherence, social contract theory and moral motivation, the role of reason, community and universal duties, and proposes ethical bases for mobilizing more effective means of commitment to refugee rights.
Following the two chapters on utilitarianism are chapters on Marx and on social contract theory.
The article examines the theories of John Rawls on political philosophy, which are premised on the social contract theory and on the art of democratic statesmanship.
It also offers some heady insights into the relation between self-transformation and the transformation of the state in ancient philosophy, as well as Cavell's own take on social contract theory.
He describes and engages with debates of philosophers such as Kant on autonomy, relativism, realism, utilitarianism, deontology, social contract theory, and considers themes in the history of moral philosophy as well as emotion and integrity in human relationships, using the example of Oskar Schindler.
Let us reconsider it in the light of modern social contract theory (see Binmore 1997 and Rawls 1971).