Vulnerability, the Responsive State, and the Role of Religion
In Exploring Vulnerability, H. Springhart and G. Thomas (eds.), Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht 2017
20 Pages Posted: 19 Dec 2017
Date Written: December 1, 2017
It addresses the growing (and empirically based) perception that the law, politics, and the state itself is failing its most fundamental task of ensuring a just and equitable society. It argues that we must intentionally and attentively construct a system of laws and legal responsibility that is responsive to and recognizes everyone in society has needs as individuals, as well as considering the role that institutions play in individual and collective lives. The following pages sets forth an argument for the intentional and society-centric development of a political and legal ethic of compassion that mandates a more socially responsive state than currently exists in many Western democracies. It does so by first considering the universality of human vulnerability and dependency and subsequently recognizing the responsibility of the state to respond to the implications and consequences of that shared human condition.
Keywords: vulnerability, state responsibility, religion, legal theory, dependency, social justice, compassion
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