The liberal vision of the political
Consensus, freedom, and legitimacy
in Liberal realism
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This chapter sets out the liberal ‘vision of the political’. Focusing specifically on contemporary theories of political liberalism, it brings to the surface assumptions about politics and the nature of the political that is often left unexamined or implicit in much contemporary liberal thought. This ‘vision’ essentially assumes that politics takes place against the backdrop of a set of principles or values on which all persons can or can reasonably be expected to accept. It also seeks to highlight how this consensus vision of the political is underpinned by a particular normative concern with respecting individuals’ freedom by constraining political power via a series of normative and institutional mechanisms.

Liberal realism

A realist theory of liberal politics

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