What it Means to be a Pluralist
Revised version published in Yitzhak Benbaji and Naomi Sussmann, eds., Reading Walzer, Routledge, 2013.
24 Pages Posted: 29 May 2008 Last revised: 28 Dec 2013
Date Written: May 28, 2008
Michael Walzer has made great contributions to the appreciation of both moral and cultural pluralism in political theory. Nonetheless, there are ways in which Walzer's arguments appear anti-pluralistic. The question of this essay is: why is there so little pluralism in Walzer's political theory, or why does its pluralism run out so soon? Focusing on Spheres of Justice and Nation and Universe, it examines the effect of Walzer's nationalism/statism on his theory, and the constraints his theory faces in considering multiculturalism or political pluralist regimes such as federalism within a state.
Keywords: multiculturalism, nationalism, political theory, political philosophy, Michael Walzer
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