Is pluralism inherent to the human condition? Does it have its origins in the diversity of cultures? Are disagreements among individuals the same as disagreements among societies?
Focusing on these critical questions essential to the understanding of modern societies, this book traces the origins of pluralism in contemporary political thought and presents new, original interpretations of the idea by contemporary philosophers. The chapters in the volume bring clarity into an ongoing fractious debate and reveal the underlying roots and fissures in our understanding of a dynamic and contested idea. Drawing on the works of John Rawls, Jürgen Habermas, and other major political philosophers, they delve into the different strands of the concept, their possible real-world political outcomes, and popular misconceptions.
A key text, this volume will be essential reading for scholars and researchers of politics, political theory and philosophy, and social theory.
Volker Kaul teaches at the Department of Political Science at LUISS "Guido Carli" University in Rome and is lecturer at the CEA Rome Center, Italy. He also coordinates the research area "East-West Dialogues" for the foundation Reset-Dialogues on Civilizations.
Ingrid Salvatore is an associate professor of political philosophy at the University of Salerno, Italy.
Ingrid Salvatore and Volker Kaul
PART I: Epistemic Pluralism and Democracy
1. From Pluralism to Liberalism: The Long Way Around
2. Pluralism and Deliberation
3. Social Choice or Collective Decision-making: What Is Politics All About?
4. Liberalism, Pluralism, and a Third Way
PART II: Political Pluralism and Reasonable Consensus
5. Sideways at the Entrance of the Cave: A Pluralist Footnote to Plato
6. Pluralism and the Possibility of a Liberal Political Consensus
7. Modus Vivendi Liberalism, Practice-dependence and Political Legitimacy
8. A Pluralist Model of Democracy
9. Rawls, Religion, and the Clash of Civilizations
PART III: Cultures, Religions, and Politics
10. The Practice of Liberty
11. Sharing a Conception of Justice, Sharing a Conception of the Good: Liberalism as a Pluralist Theory vs. Pluralism as a Non-Liberal Theory
12. Pluralism and Solidarity: Non-Authoritarian Reasoning and Non-Fundamentalist Attitude
13. Populism, Liberalism and Nationalism