Monthly Archives: December 2012

ASPLP: Immigration, Emigration, and Migration

Annual meeting of the American Society for Political and Legal Philosophy: “Immigration, Emigration and Migration”January 4th, 2013 Crescent Room 11th Floor, Westin, New Orleans Canal Place, 100 Rue Iberville, New Orleans,

8:00 AM-9:45 AM: Panel 1.

Chair: Nancy Rosenblum, Political Science, Harvard University
Principal Paper: “Law’s Migrations, Mobilities and Borders”
Author: Judith Resnik, Law, Yale.
James Bohman, Philosophy, Saint Louis University
Jennifer Hochschild, Political Science, Harvard

10AM-11:45 Panel 2
Chair: Robin West, Law, Georgetown University
Principal Paper: “Why Do States Have the Right to Control Immigration?”
Author: Sarah Song, Political Science and Law, Berkeley

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CfP: Kant on Citizenship and Exclusion

CfP on “Kant on Citizenship and Exclusion” for a Panel at ECPR General Conference in Bordeaux in September 2013.

Proposals are welcome and can be sent until 1st of February 2013.

ECPR General Conference Bordeaux 04-07 September 2013

Section: Justification and Application: The Nature and Function of Political Norms.

Panel chair: Oliviero Angeli, TU Dresden

Panel co-chair : Nele Schneidereit, TU Dresden

Please submit your paper proposal online through the ECPR website

and send a copy of your paper proposal to the panel chairs ( / read more...

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MANCEPT Workshops in Political Theory 2013, Call for Convenors

The MANCEPT Workshops in Political Theory 2013 is an annual conference in political theory, organised under the auspices of the Manchester Centre for Political Theory, University of Manchester. This year’s conference will be the tenth event in the series and will take place on Wednesday 4th September until Friday 6th September 2013 at the Arthur Lewis Building, University of Manchester. Over the last nine years, participants from over twenty five countries have come together in a series of workshops concerned with issues in political theory/philosophy widely construed. Last year the workshops had more than 200 delegates attending, and the conference is now established as a leading international forum dedicated to the discussion of research in political theory. read more...

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Call for Papers: Theory and Practice: The Limits of Ethics for Guiding Action, 15-16 March 2013, University of Toronto

Centre for Ethics Graduate Associates Conference, University of Toronto

“Theory and Practice: The Limits of Ethics for Guiding Action”

Keynote Speaker: Colin Farrelly, Queen’s University

Western social and political thought has long been concerned with the limitations of theoretical inquiry in beneficially guiding human behavior. From Aristotle’s debate with Plato on the nature of the ideal city to Marx’s famous assertion that “the philosophers have only interpreted the world; the point, however, is to change it!”, philosophers have long debated the relationship between theory and practice. More recently, this debate has resurfaced as a challenge to ‘ideal’ theories of justice and politics associated with twentieth century Anglo-American thinkers such as John Rawls and G.A Cohen. The critique of ideal theory is also evident in the continental philosophical tradition through the work of Axel Honneth and Nancy Fraser. The so-called ‘realist’ challenges to such theories are manifold. On the one hand, they include an antipathy to theorizing utopias and aspirations toward consensus and ‘full compliance’ with theoretically established norms. On the other hand, contemporary ethical realists tend to promote greater empirical accuracy in normative theorizing. This tendency is motivated by a desire to replace broad normative claims with more context-specific reasoning. read more...

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CFP: Brave New World


Deadline for submission of abstract: 22nd March 2013

Brave New World 2013, the Seventeenth Annual Postgraduate Conference organised under the auspices of the Manchester Centre for Political Theory (MANCEPT), will take place on Thursday 27th and Friday 28th June 2013 at the University of Manchester. We are pleased to announce that our guest speakers this year are:

Samuel Scheffler (NYU)
Michael Otsuka (UCL)

The Brave New World conference series is now established as a leading international forum dedicated exclusively to the discussion of postgraduate research in political theory. Participants will have the chance to meet and talk about their work with eminent academics, including members of faculty from the University of Manchester and guest speakers, who will deliver keynote addresses at the event. read more...

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Brettschneider Response to Quong on the Introduction and Chapter One of When the State Speaks

I would like to begin by thanking the contributors to Public Reason symposium for such careful summaries of the book and such thoughtful and probing questions. The discussions in the comments section have also been terrific and I am grateful to all who participated. I will begin to post responses now to participants, beginning with Jon Quong’s eloquent and lucid remarks on the introduction and chapter one of When the State Speaks, What Should it Say? (I note that due to vacation it might take me some time between some of my reply posts.)

Quong begins by outlining my ambition of avoiding both the dystopias of the Invasive State and the Hateful Society. He notes that I aim to do so by combining robust rights against coercion with “democratic persuasion.” The state engages in democratic persuasion when it combats hateful and discriminatory viewpoints by using its expressive capacities, including its spending power.

Quong asks why my opposition to hateful expression does not lead me to a more European rather than American approach to free speech. In Europe free speech is seen as a value but one that has to be balanced against other values. The European approach allows the state to use its coercive power to ban hateful expression, imprisoning people for their speech.

In contrast, my aim in the book is to defend the distinct American approach to free speech when it comes to rights against coercion. On my view, the state should follow the rule of “viewpoint neutrality” when it comes to its coercive power: it should not coercively ban any viewpoint as long as a speaker is not directly threatening a particular individual or group.

The mistake of the balancing conception is to think that the only way to recognize the values of liberty and equality is to trade them off. But value democracy proposes to respect those values simultaneously. We can pursue the transformation of illiberal beliefs while maintaining robust free speech commitments in the form of viewpoint neutrality.

One justification for limiting the right of free speech when it comes to hateful expression is that the liberal democratic state needs to “take its own side” by condemning viewpoints that are antithetical to the free and equal status of its citizens. But I argue that this can be done while protecting the right of free speech. The state can make clear its opposition and lack of complicity with hateful viewpoints by using its expressive capacity to condemn them and explain why they should be rejected.

According to the balancing conception, another rationale for coercively limiting hate speech is that it would make the society more stable by limiting views that might undermine liberal democracy. But to see the superiority of my approach over balancing, consider a world in which democratic persuasion was as successful in pushing back against hateful viewpoints as coercive punishment of those views. If there were a small-added advantage to protecting all viewpoints, this would recommend value democracy over its alternatives. But even if it were less successful, I maintain it can push back these views such that there is no risk of a collapse of democracy. Value democracy sufficiently answers what I call the “stability worry” about the Hateful Society.

But on my view the advantages of viewpoint neutrality to a democratic society are not small. They are significant such that even if democratic persuasion is successful in curtailing hateful viewpoints, but less effective than coercion, we should still pursue a path of protecting all viewpoints while engaging in democratic persuasion.

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