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|Other Titles:||Taking Berlin's Methodology Seriously: An Interpretation of Value Pluralism and Liberalism|
value pluralism;liberalism;negative liberty;positive liberty;monism;empathy
|Issue Date:||2013-12-13 17:27:58 (UTC+8)|
Isaiah Berlin is well known to have advocated value pluralism and supported liberalism. Many critics have argued that value pluralism by logic cannot prioritize any particular value, and therefore cannot give support to liberalism. By contrast, followers of Berlin have pointed out that value pluralism logically runs against todays mainstream liberalism, but it can serve as the foundation for a new form of liberalism. Yet neither of them have taken seriously Berlins statement that the relations between value pluralism and liberalism are not logical connections.Contending that Berlins political thought can only be fully understood in light of the methodology proposed by him, this article is meant to read his writings strictly in his own terms. The result of this reading is that Berlins value pluralism and what he termed as monism are two irreconcilable visions of the world-their differences run as deep as how value and rationality may be understood, and ultimately what counts as a free moral agent. And understanding as such paves the way for us to interpret Berlins distinction between positive and negative liberty as a defence for human freedom at the most abstract level of thought, as well as a to appreciate value pluralism as a powerful argument against any form of ideology, including doctrinaire liberalism. In the end, it will be clear that value pluralism is an extrapolation of his vision of the world, which in itself is an expression of tolerant and self-critical spirit- that is, undeniably a liberal mentality. Only then could we truly understand Berlins call for empathy and his life-long engagement with writing history of ideas as a foxs strategy- to convert hedgehogs into value pluralists.
|Appears in Collections:||[政治學系] 期刊論文|
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