Analysis Of John Rawls Theory Of Justice

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Why John Rawls’ theory of justice actually attacks the central pillar of Western thought about self-determined human individuals acting on a basis of a free will and therefore being responsible for the results of their decisions and actions? Is it possible to rescue the idea? We have become accustomed with the idea of individualism ever since the Enlightenment period, as never before in the history. With the idea of individualism being emphasized, we engraved in our thoughts ‘the fact’ that the individuals are to be held entirely responsible for the results of their actions or decisions. Some of the brave individuals whom today we regard as the enlightenment philosophers, pronounced loudly the individual responsibilities for empowering communal…show more content…
Thus, in his book A Theory of Justice (1971), he provides us with a theory that he calls Justice as Fairness, aiming to the setting up a fair and just society for all, considering the existing inequalities. The model of this theory was like a response to the Utilitarianism, which does not take into account the rights and liberties of the minorities. The reason to come up with something substitutional to the prevailing utilitarian theory, can be traced to the very basic assumptions that according to Rawls, constitute human nature. Rawls believes that humans are individuals, differently equipped with physical features, natural talents and circumstances. What puts them on an equal basis, is their capacity of rationality and reasoning, meaning that individuals are rational in terms of conceptualizing what is good for themselves, but at the same time, they are reasonable in terms of acknowledging the right things for themselves and for the others in the community. So they can choose. The way that Rawls distinguishes the rationality from reasoning, points to the idea of consideration of humans as social beings, who are neither egoistic nor altruistic, but rather seeking a risk-averse positioning of themselves in the best way possible. At the end of the day, we are individuals, seeking rights,…show more content…
By virtue of that right they freely determine their political status and freely pursue their economic, social and cultural development’ . While reading this article, it makes me put the stress on self-determination part of it. A self-determined act would necessarily mean that one is to be held responsible for that act, be it to the one’s advantage or to the opposite. At least, this is the way we are used to regard our decision taking, by attributing our thoughts, actions and decisions, solely to our own choice subjected to our own free will, disregarding the constraints. Rawls, on the other side, rightfully assumes (in my opinion), that we are responsible for making our choices, in order to come up with the fairest society for all. What one needs to do, is simply to try imagining the advantaged position of theirs, as inexistent, because otherwise, it would be not possible to put everyone in the hypothetical original position. Human beings then, opting to always apply the Rawlsian MaxiMin Principle, meaning choosing risk-aversely the best position of the worst, would come up with something that would be acceptable and fair for all. But what Rawls fails to address, is the fact that the responsibility doesn’t rely only on the way we come up with a fair society, but responsibility is born right after every
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