Postmodern Bourgeois Liberalism

  • Ian Ward
Part of the Law and Philosophy Library book series (LAPS, volume 31)


Richard Rorty, it has been recently asserted, is the most influential thinker in contemporary Anglo-American philosophy (Haber 1994, p.7). Richard Rorty is also an imperialist. He claims dominion for a new postmodern bourgeois liberalism. According to Rorty, postmodern bourgeois liberalism represents another generation in a genealogy which begins with Kant and then moves through Heidegger, sprouts illegitimate offspring in the likes of Foucault and Derrida, and then comes to rest with the liberal ironist like himself. More than this, Rorty claims dominion for postmodern bourgeois liberalism over a number of other political philosophers including John Rawls and Roberto Unger. The purpose of this chapter is to investigate the nature of this particular genealogy and to assess the validity of Rorty’s dominion.


Public Reason Liberal Politics Reflective Equilibrium Critical Legal Study Substantive Justice 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ian Ward
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of LawUniversity of DundeeUK

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