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A measure of freedom

Author: Ian Carter
Publisher: New York : Oxford University Press, 1999.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
When liberal political philosophers talk of equalizing, increasing or maximizing freedom (or liberty), they implicitly assume freedom to be a measurable attribute. Freedom is one of the currencies of a liberal theory of distributive justice, and is therefore assumed to be something that individuals can possess in varying degrees. Yet it is rarely clear what is meant by claims about degrees of freedom. To make sense  Read more...
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Material Type: Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: Ian Carter
ISBN: 0198294530 9780198294535
OCLC Number: 39849388
Description: xi, 310 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Contents: The concept of overall freedom ---
The value of freedom ---
The distribution of freedom ---
Reflective equilibrium ---
The value-based approach ---
Self-mastery ---
Individual freedom: actions ---
Individual freedom: constraints ---
Group freedom ---
Indicators of freedom.
Responsibility: Ian Carter.
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Abstract:

How do we know when one person or society is 'freer' than another? Can freedom be measured? Is more freedom better than less? This book provides the first full-length treatment of these fundamental  Read more...

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"Ian Carter's book on freedom is a first-rate work of political and legal philosophy. It is extraordinarily well structured, technically sophisticated, consistently illuminating, and rigorously Read more...

 
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    schema:description "When liberal political philosophers talk of equalizing, increasing or maximizing freedom (or liberty), they implicitly assume freedom to be a measurable attribute. Freedom is one of the currencies of a liberal theory of distributive justice, and is therefore assumed to be something that individuals can possess in varying degrees. Yet it is rarely clear what is meant by claims about degrees of freedom. To make sense of such claims, we need to clarify the concept of overall freedom and ask whether its measurement is theoretically possible. This concept is important because freedom has, for liberals, non-specific (or content-independent) value -- i.e. value that is independent of the value of being free to do specific things. Liberals prescribe not only that individuals have certain specific freedom-types but also that they have a measure of (overall) freedom. Attempts to make sense of the concept of overall freedom by weighting particular options in terms of their values are erroneous, as these do not account for freedomʹs non-specific value. On the other hand, a closer examination of the problems of the individuation of actions and of the various types of constraints on freedom shows overall freedom to be measurable in a way that reflects its non-specific value. To this end, actions need to be individuated in spatio-temporal terms and constraints on freedom need to be characterized in terms of the physical compossibility of actions. The comparative judgements about freedom implied by this analysis (with reference both to individuals and to groups) are more coherent with our intuitive judgements than might at first be expected. -- From http://www.oxfordscholarship.com/view/10.1093/0198294530.001.0001/acprof-9780198294535 (Oct. 23, 2012)."@en ;
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