Realistic Idealism and the Project of Political Economy

14 Pages Posted: 28 Oct 2015

See all articles by Mark Pennington

Mark Pennington

University of London - Department of Political Economy

Date Written: October 2015

Abstract

This paper explores the constraints that should inform understandings of which political economic institutions are both economically and political feasible and ethically attractive. Focusing on cognitive constraints and motivational constraints, it suggests that the classical liberal ideal of a society based largely on voluntary exchanges within a minimalist conception of justice comes closest to matching the terms of a ‘realistic idealism’.

Keywords: classical liberalism, ethics, ideal theory, political economy

JEL Classification: I3, P00, P1, P5

Suggested Citation

Pennington, Mark, Realistic Idealism and the Project of Political Economy (October 2015). Economic Affairs, Vol. 35, Issue 3, pp. 366-379, 2015, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2681400 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ecaf.12139

Mark Pennington (Contact Author)

University of London - Department of Political Economy ( email )

London
United Kingdom

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