From Political Liberalism to Para-Liberalism: Epistemological Pluralism, Cognitive Liberalism & Authentic Choice

Comparative Philosophy, Vol. VII, No. 2, Fall 2016

24 Pages Posted: 20 Oct 2017  

Musa al-Gharbi

Columbia University - Department of Sociology

Date Written: July 6, 2016

Abstract

Advocates of political liberalism hold it as a superior alternative to perfectionism on the grounds that it avoids superfluous and/or controversial claims in favor of a maximally-inclusive approach undergirded by a "free-standing" justification for the ideology. These assertions prove difficult to defend: political interpretations of liberalism tend to be implicitly ethnocentric; they often rely upon a number of controversial, and even empirically falsified, assumptions about rationality -- and in many ways prove more parochial than their perfectionist cousins. It is possible to reform political liberalism to address these challenges, but generally at the expense of the supposed normative force and universality of the liberal project. However, this para-liberal approach is much better in keeping with contemporary findings in sociology, psychology and cognitive science -- and can much more effectively accommodate the illiberal challenge.

Keywords: Sociology of Knowledge, Cognitive Sociology, Liberalism, Cognitive Science, Social Psychology

JEL Classification: F54, Z12, Z18, I31

Suggested Citation

al-Gharbi, Musa, From Political Liberalism to Para-Liberalism: Epistemological Pluralism, Cognitive Liberalism & Authentic Choice (July 6, 2016). Comparative Philosophy, Vol. VII, No. 2, Fall 2016. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3056098

Musa Al-Gharbi (Contact Author)

Columbia University - Department of Sociology ( email )

New York, NY 10027
United States

HOME PAGE: http://sociology.columbia.edu/content/musa-al-gharbi

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