Stability, Autonomy, and the Foundations of Political Liberalism

Law and Philosophy (5):1-28 (2022)
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An attractive form of social stability is realized when the members of a well-ordered society give that society’s organizing principles their free and reflective endorsement. However, many political philosophers are skeptical that there is any requirement to show that their principles would engender this kind of stability. This skepticism is at the root of a number of objections to political liberalism, since arguments for political liberalism often appeal to its ability to be stable in this way. The aim of this paper is to address skepticism about the stability condition by putting forward a novel defense of it. My defense builds on the claim that stable principles are necessary to secure the full autonomy of those who live under them.

Author's Profile

Anthony Taylor
Université de Fribourg


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