Friday, March 23, 2012

CFP: Alcohol, Public Policy, and Social Science


Special Issue of Contemporary Social Science

Alcohol, Public Policy, and Social Science

Alcohol has been a part of most human societies since civilization began. Yet, their relation has been far from unproblematic with several attempts at regulation and even prohibition.

This special issue will highlight the rich interdisciplinary social science research on alcohol and public policy. We welcome original articles from a range of different perspectives exploring all relevant areas of alcohol, public policy, and social science including case studies and critical reviews on topics such as alcoholism; the economics of alcohol (including marketing and taxation); feminist approaches to alcohol; homelessness and alcohol; public disorder, public drunkenness, and violence; and youth and alcohol.

Manuscripts should follow the usual instructions for electronic submission of papers to Contemporary Social Science. Authors should indicate that they wish the manuscript to be reviewed for inclusion in the special issue. The Editors of this issue would be happy to review plans for papers in advance of their receipt. All papers will be peer reviewed. The closing date for submitting papers is 30th April 2012. The corresponding Special Editor for this issue is Thom Brooks (

Thursday, March 22, 2012


Hot off the press -- Thom Brooks (ed.), Rawls and Law (Ashgate, 2012). The blurb:

"John Rawls (1921-2002) is widely held to be amongst the most important political philosophers for over a century. This volume, which is the first work of its kind to publish in one place the most influential essays in the field, features articles on a wide range of subjects including constitutionalism, democratic theory, egalitarianism, feminism, global justice, political liberalism, the rule of law, and public reason. The collection informs scholars and students coming to the study of Rawls's work for the first time of the importance and complexity of Rawl's ideas, and sheds light on how these ideas might be further improved and applied."

Introduction, Thom Brooks

Part I Constitutional Law
Rawls on constitutionalism and constitutional law, Frank I Michelman
Rawls and the law, Ronald Dworkin
Are there limits to constitutional change? Rawls on comprehensive doctrines, unconstitutional amendments, and the basis of equality, Charles A. Kelbley
A backdoor to policy making: the use of philosophers by the Supreme Court, Neomi Rao
Does philosophy deserve a place at the Supreme Court?, Thom Brooks

Part II Immigration
Immigration, association, and the family, Matthew Lister

Part III Political Liberalism and Public Reason
Political liberalism, Michael J. Sandel
The subject of liberalism, Frank I. Michelman
Some problems with public reason in John Rawls's political liberalism, Kent Greenawalt
Can a liberal take his own side in an argument? The case for John Rawls's idea of political liberalism, Ronald C. Den Otter

Part IV
On belling the cat: Rawls and tort as corrective justice, Kevin A Kordana and David H. Tabachnick
Private order and public justice: Kant and Rawls, Arthur Ripstein

Part V Reparations
Rawls and reparation, Martin D. Carcieri

Part VI Global Justice and International Law
From Utopia to Kazanistan: John Rawls and the law of peoples, John Tasioulas
The incoherence between Rawls's theories of justice, Thomas W. Pogge
Why Rawls is not a cosmopolitan egalitarian, Leif Wenar
Preventing military intervention? John Rawls and Jurgen Habermas on a just global order, Regina Kreide
Human rights and liberal toleration, David Reidy

Name index

Friday, March 16, 2012

A brief message to note my new homepage --  More links to follow.

Themes in Moral Philosophies of Kant and Rawls

Details here of what looks like a terrific conference.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Thom Brooks, "Reciprocity as Mutual Recognition"

This paper is available here and forthcoming in. The abstract:

"For Rawls, there is an important difference between competing forms of regimes and what he calls a ‘property-owning democracy’ and ‘liberal socialism’. This difference includes that only the latter best guarantees principles of justice and satisfy the criterion of reciprocity. In this article, I will focus on the importance of reciprocity for this account and what it reveals about the citizens found in property-owning democracies and liberal socialist regimes. These regimes do not merely correctly recognize and uphold the importance of central principles of justice, but they also correctly recognize each other in an identity-forming way. These citizens mutually recognize one another as free and equal, but also they identify with others in a common bond of citizenship. Rawlsian justice is more than about principles and reciprocity, but it is also about mutual recognition and shared identity. This becomes clearer when we look to the reasons why Rawls favours some regimes over others.
The structure of this article is as follows. First, I begin with a brief explication of the relevant background. This will focus on Rawls’s two principles of justice. Secondly, I will then explain how these principles are applied by Rawls to demonstrate which regimes may be acceptable for justice as fairness. This discussion will highlight the central importance of the criterion of reciprocity. The article will conclude with an examination of the importance of reciprocity in Rawls’s account and how it may say something new about the citizens Rawls has in mind for regimes such as a property-owning democracy."

Thursday, March 08, 2012

How to referee academic papers

A reminder to readers who haven't yet seen my essay on "Guidelines on How to Referee" - abstract:

"This essay offers clear practical advice on how to act as a referee when asked to review an article for an academic journal. The advice is also relevant for reviewing manuscript proposals for academic publishers. My advice is based on my experiences in editing an academic journal, the Journal of Moral Philosophy, and four book series. I will draw on these experiences throughout as illustrations. The structure of the advice is as follows. First, I will begin by saying a few words about the academic publishing industry. Secondly, I will discuss whether one should accept or decline an invitation to review. Thirdly, I will examine the question of what appropriate standard should be applied when reviewing submissions. Finally, I conclude with advice on how to draft a report before submitting it to an editor."

Great news at St Andrews

. . . with the arrival of Marcia Baron. Details here.

Thursday, March 01, 2012

Many thanks to the Royal Society of Arts

. . . for granting membership to me today. I'm delighted and honoured.