Locke scholars, contemporary social contract theorists
, and anyone with an interest in the history of feminism and protofeminism will benefit from adding this volume to their library.
Land reformers such as Henry George and his agrarian cohorts used all three social contract theorists
to justify notions of public land, community, and natural rights.
Although neither Rawls nor classical social contract theorists
, with the partial exception of Hobbes, argued for the equality of women, later political theorists have argued that women and minorities-who have not been fully included and may even have been utterly excluded from civil society--may appeal to the notion of a "contract" made between the individuals of a society as a model for redressing their unequal status.
00--Contract, Culture, and Citizenship revisits the well-worn texts of the social contract theorists
Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, and Rawls with an interpretation that stresses the embeddedness of citizen contractors in an ongoing political culture.
The earlier medieval ideas "survived" and left "their imprint on the great social contract theorists
of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.
Filmer was one of the first political thinkers to criticize Hobbes and Milton, calling into question the legitimacy of assuming a pre-political state of nature, a foundational assumption of all social contract theorists
Against the appeal to consensus by social contract theorists
such as Rawls, the argument overlooks the degree of dissension allowed within an overlapping consensus.
Early Social Contract theorists
like Grotius, Hobbes, Locke, and especially Rousseau supported this version.
In chapter 5, "The Social Contract," Shapiro focuses predominantly on the hypothetical thought experiments of contemporary social contract theorists
, most notably John Rawls, in their attempts to establish a fair-minded political regime that people of different moral reasoning would agree to.
By ascribing a normative function to civil society, Harbeson seeks to bridge contemporary Africanists' usage of the term with that of the European social contract theorists
who invented it three centuries ago.
It also calls into question the methodology of Rawls and social contract theorists
who build models of justice around the rationally self-interested individual and what he or she is prepared to bargain for in conditions of impartiality.
Inasmuch as Miller's chief intellectual antagonists will be libertarians such as Nozick, he is aware of this problem for the would-be universalism of his theory of justice; and he attempts to disarm invisible-hand and social contract theorists
of natural rights with a proviso that he calls "the Hobbesian interpretation": "A just system [is] a system that gives everyone a noncoercive rationale for setting aside her right to resist or rebel provided that she would agree to any arrangement yielding a similarly noncoercive rationale to all" (p.