- This article is about John Rawls's book 'Political Liberalism.' For a broader description and history of liberal philosophy, see the article: Liberalism.
Political Liberalism is an update to John Rawls's Theory of Justice (1971), in which he attempts to show that his theory of justice is not a "comprehensive conception of the good", but is instead compatible with a liberal conception of the role of justice: namely, that government should be neutral between competing conceptions of the good. Rawls tries to show that his two principles of justice, properly understood, form a "theory of the right" (as opposed to a theory of the good) which would be supported by all reasonable individuals, even under conditions of reasonable pluralism. The mechanism by which he demonstrates this is called "overlapping consensus". Here he also develops his idea of public reason.
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