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Rawls And The Law Of Peoples

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Chapter Summary

The political philosopher John Rawls made his first significant foray into the field of public international law. His last major publication, The Law of Peoples, provides us, with an example of genuinely post-foundational thinking. This chapter provides a critical outline of some of the main elements of his theory of international justice. In A Theory of Justice, Rawls sought to develop a theory of justice that responded to the twin concerns of social liberalism: liberty and welfare. In doing so, he developed his two principles of justice. The first held that each person is to have an equal right to the most extensive basic liberty compatible with a similar liberty for others; the second that social and economic inequalities are to be arranged so that they are both (a) reasonably expected to be to everyones advantage, and (b) attached to positions and offices open to all.

Keywords: A Theory of Justice; human rights; John Rawls; post-foundationalism; public international law; The Law of Peoples



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