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What Is the Social Contract Model

Rousseau has two different theories of the social contract. The first is found in his essay Discourse on the Origin and Foundations of Inequality among Peoples, commonly called the Second Discourse, and is an account of man`s moral and political development over time, from a state of nature to modern society. As such, it contains his naturalized presentation of the social contract, which he considers highly problematic. The second is its normative or idealized theory of the social contract and aims to provide the means to mitigate the problems that modern society has created for us, as set forth in the social contract. And in this natural law is the source and the original of justice. For where no covenant has been preceded, no rights have been conferred, and every man is entitled to all things; And therefore, no action can be unjust. But when a covenant is made, it is unjust to break it: and the definition of injustice is nothing but the non-fulfillment of a covenant. And what is not unfair is right. It is called a contract because it involves an exchange of services. Citizens give up some of their personal power and freedom. In return, the state provides security and guarantees the protection of civil liberties.

In addition to stating what representatives think of the world and the results of their agreement, there must also be a standard by which representative parties can evaluate various contractual options. You must be able to evaluate options based on their values, whatever they may be. Rawls models the parties to the contractual situation so that, at least initially, they have only one measure of value: primary goods. They choose the conception of justice they do, insofar as they believe that it is likely to produce the most important goods for them and their descendants. This specification of the evaluative parameter is consistent for all breeders and, therefore, the choice in the original position can be modeled as the choice of an individual. Where there is evaluative diversity between representatives, more complex models of agreement will be needed (see §3). For the most part, feminism defies simple or universal definition. In general, feminists take women`s experiences seriously, as well as the impact of theories and practices on women`s lives. Given the pervasive influence of contract theory on social, political, and moral philosophy, it is therefore not surprising that feminists have much to say about whether contract theory is appropriate or appropriate from the standpoint of taking women seriously. Examining all feminist reactions to social contract theory would take us far beyond the confines of this article.

I will therefore focus on three of these arguments: Carole Pateman`s argument on the relationship between contract and the subordination of women to men, feminist arguments on the nature of the liberal individual, and the argument of care. The main approach to negotiation stems from the influential work of Rubinstein (1982) and his proof that it is possible to show that an alternating offer negotiation process produces the same result as Nash`s axiomatic solution in some cases. This result revived Nash`s (1950) early observation that negotiation and negotiation rules must be the result of uncooperative play, with the idea that it might be possible to combine negotiation theory and game theory. This approach, called the Nash program, is advocated by Binmore (1998), whose evolutionary approach to the social contract relies on biological evolution (the game of life) to create the basic conditions for negotiation (the game of morality). Both can be modeled as uncooperative games and the latter can be modeled as a trading problem. With this approach, Binmore (1998, 2005) claims to be able to show in a robust and unconditional way that something like Rawls` “justice as fairness” will be the result of this evolutionary negotiation process. The idea of the social contract goes back at least to Epicurus (Thrasher 2013). In its recognizable modern form, however, the idea was revived by Thomas Hobbes; it was developed in different ways by John Locke, Jean-Jacques Rousseau and Immanuel Kant. After Kant, the idea largely fell into disrepute until it was revived by John Rawls. It is now at the heart of the work of a number of moral and political philosophers. A justified contract must meet all the conditions of publicity: its full justification must be genuinely acceptable to the members of a well-ordered society. The hypothetical agreement itself provides only what Rawls (1996, 386) calls a “pro tanto” or “as far as possible” justification of the principles of justice.

“Full justification” will only be achieved when “people support and liberalize liberal justice for the particular (and often contradictory) reasons implicit in the reasonable global doctrines they advocate” (Freeman 2007b, 19). Understood in this way, Rawls` concern for the stability of justice as equity, which motivated the transition to political liberalism, is itself a matter of justification (Weithman, 2010). Only when the principles of justice are so stable are they fully justified. However, Rawls` concern for stability and publicity is not idiosyncratic and is shared by all contemporary theorists of the treatise. It is significant that even theorists such as Buchanan (2000 [1975], 26-27), Gauthier (1986, 348) and Binmore (2005, 5-7) – who are so different from Rawls in other respects – share his concern for stability. Gauthier has an advantage over Hobbes when it comes to developing the argument that cooperation between purely selfish agents is possible. It has access to rational choice theory and its sophisticated methodology to show how such cooperation can occur. In particular, he invokes the prisoner`s dilemma model to show that self-interest can be compatible with cooperative action. (There is a reasonable argument that we can find in Hobbes a primitive version of the prisoner`s dilemma problem.) In the social contract model developed here, the fear of death (of the storm of distortion)45 is a fundamental motive underlying negotiation and a force for consensus.46 However, this fear would disappear once everyone was transported to the New World. Why, then, should the peoples of the New World remain part of their New Society? The answer, we will find, is that among the alternatives, the new global society best allows each individual to seek and secure his own just society as much as possible. Self-interest, but not necessarily selfish interests, should sustain and sustain the New Society from the beginning. However, instead of relying on this long-term motive, as we shall see, the Convention will examine how the New Society can be strengthened against decadence in a state of social injustice.