Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE (www.oxfordhandbooks.com). © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 12 July 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Constructivism and intuitionism are often seen as opposed methods of justification in political philosophy. An “ecumenical” view sees them as different but unopposed: each style of reasoning can yield fundamental principles, for different questions of distributive justice, and we can rightly take up different questions, with different, equally valid, theoretical objectives, in hopes of cultivating a thousand blooming flowers. This chapter develops this position with special interest in Rawls’s constructivism, his treatment of reflective equilibrium, self-evidence, and “moral geometry,” and his evolving dialogue with the intuitionist Henry Sidgwick. Rawls’s main difference from Sidgwick lies in the way he frames the question of right or justice in the first instance. This brings out both the possibility and the attractions of the ecumenist conception in political philosophy.

Keywords: constructivism, intuitionism, distributive justice, justification, self-evidence, moral geometry, reflective equilibrium, John Rawls, G. A. Cohen, Henry Sidgwick

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.