The Fall 2015 Philosophy Colloquium Series presents Andrew Williams, University of Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona. The title of his talk is "Political Constructivism And State-Given Reasons." (Abstract below.)
Friday, Sep 11, 2015, 3-5pm, Maloney Seminar Room, Social Sciences 224 (1145 E South Campus Drive 85721).
'Political constructivism', or henceforth 'constructivism', refers to one 'view about the structure and content of a political conception' (Rawls, Political Liberalism, 89) that claims political morality resembles an artefact in some respects. More specifically, constructivism claims various action-guiding political principles can be 'represented' as if they emerged from some 'procedure of construction' (PL, 93), and are made sound by possessing various properties an appropriately descrived designer would select. I attempt to clarify the distinctive content and appeal of constructivism, and the idea of state-given reasons can play in stating the doctrine. I also assess how the doctrine can withstand some criticisms pressed by G. A. Cohen.