© 2009

Does Truth Matter?

Democracy and Public Space

  • Raf Geenens
  • Ronald Tinnevelt

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xi
  2. The Epistemic Value of Democracy

  3. Institutionalizing Democracy

  4. The Physical Spaces of Democracy

  5. Transnational Democracy

  6. Back Matter
    Pages 187-194

About this book


On the political level many seem to agree that democracy doesn’t need foundations, nor are its citizens expected to discuss the worth or truth of their comprehensive conceptions of the good life. And yet we still call upon ‘truth’ when we participate in defining the basic structure of our society and argue why our opinions, beliefs and preferences need to be taken seriously. We do not think that our views need to be taken into account by others because they are our views, but because we think they are true. If in a democratic society citizens have to deal with the challenge of affirming their claims as true, the precise relationship between truth and democracy needs to be analyzed. Does truth matter to democracy and if so, what is the place of truth in democratic politics? How can citizens affirm the truth of their claims and accept - at the same time - that their truth is just one amongst many? In Does Truth Matter? leading academics in the fields of philosophy, sociology and political science focus on the role the public sphere plays in answering these pressing questions. They try to give a comprehensive answer to these questions from the perspective of the main approaches of contemporary democratic theory: deliberative democracy, political pragmatism and liberalism.


Democracy Epistemology John Rawls Liberalism Plato Pragmatism Public Sphere Truth logic politics responsibility will

Editors and affiliations

  • Raf Geenens
    • 1
  • Ronald Tinnevelt
    • 2
  1. 1.Catholic University of LeuvenBelgium
  2. 2.Radboud University NijmegenThe Netherlands

Bibliographic information