Political Theory

Arguments for Liberty


This conference explored some of the major philosophical debates within the liberal tradition: What is the relationship between self-ownership and ownership of private property understood as external resources? Is it possible to defend liberal policies on perfectionist grounds? Are liberty and equality compatible? What is the importance of the knowledge problem in a philosophical defense of classical liberalism?


Conference Readings

Cowen, Tyler. “Does the Welfare State Help the Poor?” Social Philosophy and Policy Volume 19, no. Number 1 (Winter 2000): 36–54.

Dworkin, Ronald. Sovereign Virtue: The Theory and Practice of Equality. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2000.

Hayek, F.A, “The Use of Knowledge in Society.” in The Libertarian Reader, edited by Machan, Tibor, 67-75. Totowa: Rowman and Littlefield , 1982.

Kavka, Gregory. For and Against the State: New Philosophical Readings, . Edited by T. Sanders and Jan Narveson. Boston: Rowman and Littlefield, 1996.

Lomasky, Loren L. Persons, Rights, and the Moral Community . New York: Oxford University Press, 1986.

Nagel, Ernest. The Structure of Science: Problems in the Logic of Scientific Explanation . New York: Hartcourt, 1961.

Otsuka, Michael. Libertarianism without Inequality . Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003.

Rasmussen, Douglas and Douglas J. Den Uyl. Norms of Liberty: A Perfectionist Basis for Non-Perfectionist Politics. University Park: Pennsylvania State University Press, 2005.

Rothbard, Murray N, "Society without a State." in The Libertarian Reader, edited by Machan, Tibor, 53-63. Totowa: Rowmand and Littlefield, 1982.

Schmidtz, David. The Elements of Justice. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2006.

Schmidtz, David and Robert E. Goodin. Social Welfare and Individual Responsibility. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998.

Sowell, Thomas. Knowledge and Decisions. New York: Basic Books, 1996.