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Norms of Liberty

Some time ago, I was privileged to read significant parts of Norms of Liberty: A Perfectionist Basis for Non-Perfectionist Politics, authored by my friends and colleagues Douglas B. Rasmussen and Douglas J. Den Uyl. I was deeply impressed with the manuscript, and I am delighted to announce today that the book has been published by Penn State Press (the publisher of several of my own books).

Click Here to Purchase the New Rasmussen-Den Uyl Title

As the abstract states, the book asks how we can "establish a political/legal order that does not require the human flourishing of any person or group to be given structured preference over that of any other." Rasmussen and Den Uyl, who are on the Board of Advisors of The Journal of Ayn Rand Studies, examine the foundations of political liberalism. They are post-Randian neo-Aristotelians who have written a significant tract in political philosophy, continuing the fine work of such previous books as Liberty and Nature: An Aristotelian Defense of Liberal Order.

JARS will be reviewing the book, and we hope it will spark some good discussion. In fact, the upcoming Spring 2006 issue will feature a contribution from Doug Rasmussen, as part of a larger symposium on Rand's ethics.

I highly recommend this book.

Comments welcome.


Itís hard for a guy to keep up with the output from Randian-influenced academics. If they live up to the standards of L&N, this should be a good book. I found L&N helpful on many accounts. I recommend it to my conservative friends who think there is a virtue/liberty trade-off. Iím looking forward to reading their latest. Thanks for the heads-up.

Norms of Liberty will also be the subject of a symposium at the next meeting of the American Association for the Philosophic Study of Society, which meets in conjunction with the Eastern Division meeting of the American Philosophical Association in Dec. Info at http://hnn.us/blogs/entries/14255.html

That's great to know. The meeting is scheduled for 2-5 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 28, 2005.