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IS-BILAT-Mobilitet Norge-USA /Canada

Science, Religion and Political Liberalism - A Critique of Political Liberal "Public Reason"

Awarded: NOK 96,000

The project will result in a monograph of around 250 pages. The preliminary title of the dissertation is "On"Public Reason""- A Critique of Rawls' Idea of Public Reason. The dissertation will have an introductory chapter and three subsequent parts, each c omposed of two chapters. The introductory chapter looks at how ideas of a distinctly public use of reason, have been used, and misused, in a number of ways in political philosophy since the mid 17th-century. The first part of the dissertation is exegeti cal and seeks to clarify Rawls' distinct model of public reason. Three different models of public reason is discerned in Rawls' political philosophy. It is argued that only one of these models is consistent with Rawls' overall political liberal framewor k. It is however also argued that his model is incomplete. The second part goes into the question of Rawls' method of justification and his claim that his political philosophy is "metaphysically freestanding". For Rawls political liberal public reaso n has an important legitimizing and justifying function, but Rawls' idea of a public reason is itself in need of justification. Finally the dissertation discusses whether Rawls' concrete model of public reason gives us a practicable framework for handl ing some of the pervasive conflicts that riddles contemporary liberal democracies. Controversial uses of scientific and religious arguments in the public sphere provides the framework for this discussion.

Funding scheme:

IS-BILAT-Mobilitet Norge-USA /Canada