Category Archives: Symposia

Symposium on Corey Brettschneider’s Democratic Rights

I’m very happy to say that a symposium on Corey Brettschneider’s Democratic Rights has now been published in Representation. The symposium is based on the contributions to the reading group on the book that took place here in late 2008. (This follows an earlier symposium in the same journal that originated from our earlier reading group on David Estlund’s Democratic Authority.) Representation very generously gave us a lot of space to explore the issues that Corey’s book raises, so people working in democratic theory might like to take a look.

The symposium comprises my introduction and the following papers: read more...

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Symposium Announcement

“Rawlsian Liberalism in Context(s)”

Date: February 26-27, 2010
Place:Toyota Auditorium, Baker Center for Public Policy, University of Tennessee

Over a period of fifty years, John Rawls developed and gave voice to the most powerful and systematic moral theory of constitutional liberal democracy since John Stuart Mill’s work a century earlier.  The recent publication of Rawls’s undergraduate thesis, “A Brief Inquiry into the Meaning of Sin and Faith,” has encouraged a profitable re-reading of his political philosophy in the context and light of his personal and scholarly engagement with theological ethics and political theology in general and Christianity in particular.  Building on this development, “Rawlsian Liberalism in Context(s)” aims to shed further light on Rawls’s work by situating it within multiple disciplinary contexts.  Symposium speakers will address the relationships between Rawls’s thought and 20th century developments in economics and political economy, in analytic philosophy, in American pragmatist thought, in normative theorizing of American foreign policy and international relations, and in theological ethics and political theology.  Symposium speakers, each an expert on Rawls’s work, include: read more...

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PPPS: Why a Defensive War against Mitigated Aggression can be Proportionate

Hi Everyone,

This paper defends the view that a nation is justified in undertaking a defensive war — conceived of in terms of collective personal self-defense — against mitigated aggression. A nation committing mitigated aggression conditionally threatens — rather than imminently threatens — the lives of the citizens and soldiers of the victim nation in that it will employ lethal military force if and only if the victim nation does not submit to the invasion, the purpose of which is only to conquer and rule. What mitigated aggression threatens is a nation’s political sovereignty and cultural integrity, in short, a nation’s common way of life. read more...

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PPPS: Margin of Appreciation

Hello Everyone: My name is Wally Siewert. I am currently based in Santa Barbara California. The paper I would like to discuss with you concerns the European Court of Human Rights and its application of the European Convention on Human Rights. The Convention allows individuals or groups within a signatory nation to bring before the Commission (a panel of the court’s judges) complaints alleging violations of human rights by the relevant signatory government. In general (though the court’s process has changed over the years) the commission determines whether the court will accept the case and on what basis. They clarify the complaint, the issues involved, and the articles of the Convention implicated via a preliminary finding. Based on this recommendation the court itself will then either deny or take up the complaint, in the latter case requiring the government involved to respond. read more...

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PPPS: Just Procedures with Controversial Outcomes

Hello everyone!

My name is Emanuela Ceva and I’m a political philosopher based at the University of Pavia (Italy). The paper I’d like to discuss with you is an attempt to address (and hopefully provide an answer to) a well-known challenge to proceduralism about justice: if procedural theories of justice were genuinely open-ended, they might lead to controversial outcomes which, by definition, could not be disputed, because they had been produced by a just procedure. On the other hand, if they were committed to ruling out some outcomes by virtue of their inherent qualities, their very procedural nature would be jeopardised. read more...

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PPPS: On Gutmann and Thompson’s Arguments that Deliberative Democrats Shouldn’t be Pure Proceduralists

This paper concerns the prospects of pure proceduralist deliberative democratic theories. Amy Gutmann and Dennis Thompson give what seems to be the most prominent set of arguments against such pure proceduralisms in their “Deliberative Democracy Beyond Process”.* Briefly put, they argue that deliberative democrats must not be pure proceduralists because pure proceduralisms cannot seriously endorse a principle that all deliberative democrats aim to seriously endorse: the principle of reciprocity. I argue that their arguments are unsuccessful. If my arguments work they also have the positive value of indicating where debates over the prospects of pure proceduralist deliberative democratic theory should head. read more...

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