This major new Handbook provides a definitive state-of-the-art review to political theory, past and present. It offers a complete guide to all the main areas and fields of political and philosophical inquiry today by the world's leading theorists. The Handbook is divided into five parts which together serve to illustrate: - the diversity of political theorizing - the substantive theories that provide an over-aching analysis of the nature/or justification of the state and political life - the political theories that have been either formulated or resurgent in recent years - the current state of the central debates within contemporary political theory - the history of western political thought and its interpretations - traditions in political thought outside a western perspective. The Handbook of Political Theory marks a benchmark publication at the cutting edge of its field. It is essential reading for all students and academics of political theory and political philosophy around the world.

Pluralism and Liberalism

Pluralism and liberalism

In this chapter I consider the relation between liberalism and pluralism. I show, first, how pluralism is related to the phenomenon of evaluative diversity that is everywhere evident in our individual and collective activities. I distinguish a weak version of pluralism, associated with the work of John Rawls, and a strong version, largely stemming from the work of Isaiah Berlin, and perhaps more closely associated with British than with American political thought [see further Chapter 30]. I next give a brief account of a famous result in social choice theory, Arrow's Theorem, in order to develop a way of modelling what is potentially at issue in articulating a theoretical relationship between pluralism and liberalism. I then identify two devices – ...

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