Constitutional Goods

Paperback | April 29, 2007

byAlan Brudner

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Alan Brudner is a 2011 Fellow of The Royal Society of Canada.This book aims to distil the essentials of liberal constitutionalism from the jurisprudence and practice of contemporary liberal-democratic states. Most constitutional theorists have despaired of a liberal consensus on the fundamental goals of constitutional order. Instead they have contentedthemselves either with agreement on lower-level principles on which those who disagree on fundamentals may coincidentally converge, or, alternatively with a process for translating fundamental disgreement into acceptable laws.Alan Brudner suggests a conception of fundamental justice that liberals of competing philosophic schools may accept as fulfilling their own basic commitments. He argues that the model liberal-democratic constitution is best understood as a unity of three constitutional frameworks: libertarian,egalitarian, and communitarian. Each of these has a particular conception of public reason. Brudner criticizes each of these frameworks insofar as its organizing conception claims to be fundamental, and moves forward to suggest an Hegelian conception of public reason within which each framework iscontained as a constituent element of a whole.When viewed in this light, the liberal constitution embodies a surprising synthesis. It reconciles a commitment to individual liberty and freedom of conscience with the perfectionist idea that the state ought to cultivate a type of personality whose fundamental ends are the goods essential todignity. Such a reconciliation, the author suggests, may attract competing liberalisms to a consensus on an inclusive conception of public reason under which political authority is validated for those who share a confidence in the individual's inviolable worth.

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Alan Brudner is a 2011 Fellow of The Royal Society of Canada.This book aims to distil the essentials of liberal constitutionalism from the jurisprudence and practice of contemporary liberal-democratic states. Most constitutional theorists have despaired of a liberal consensus on the fundamental goals of constitutional order. Instead th...

Alan Brudner is Albert Abel Professor of Law at the University of Toronto.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:464 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.98 inPublished:April 29, 2007Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199225796

ISBN - 13:9780199225798

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Table of Contents

PrefaceIntroduction: The Aim of Constitutional TheoryPart One: Liberty1. The Libertarian Conception of the Public2. Constitutional Principles: Civil Rights3. Constitutional Principles: Political RightsPart Two: Equality4. The Egalitarian Principle of Fundamental Justice5. Self-Authorship and Substantive Justice6. Self-Rule and Procedural Justice7. Social and Economic RightsPart Three: Community8. Hegel's Idea of Sittlichkeit 9. Sex, Family, and Self-Authorship10. The Liberal Duty to Recognize Cultures11. ConsociationalismConclusion

Editorial Reviews

`Constitutional Goods is a difficult work to digest, but only because of the richness of the resources that Brudner brings to the topic and because of the intelligence and subtlety of his analysis. There can, however, be no doubting the fact that this is a major contribution to constitutionalscholarship, one that bears comparison with any work of constitutional scholarship to have been published in recent times.' Martin Loughlin, Public Law