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Peoples or Persons? Revising Rawls on Global Justice

By Gary Chartier


John Rawls\u27s The Law of Peoples offers an account of international justice grounded in a hypothetical contract between \u22peoples.\u22 I argue that a model of transnational justice rooted in a hypothetical agreement among deliberators representing individual persons-like the one that provides the basis for Rawls\u27s account of domestic justice-would be preferable. In Part I, I focus on Rawls\u27s idea of a \u22people\u22 before critiquing his almost non-existent argument for beginning with peoples rather than persons. In Part II, I examine the nature of the human rights protections that follow from Rawls\u27s starting point and the appropriate responses of liberal societies to violations of these protections. In Part III, I explore and criticize Rawls\u27s perspectives on international economic aid and the rules of warfare

Topics: Human Rights Law, International Law
Publisher: Digital Commons @ Boston College Law School
Year: 2004
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