more from Michael J. Sandel

Single Idea 22264

[catalogued under 25. Society / D. Political Doctrines / 5. Democracy / d. Representative democracy]

Full Idea

Liberty in the modern procedural republic is defined in opposition to democracy, as an individual's guarantee against what the majority might will.

Gist of Idea

Modern liberal rights in democracies protect individuals against the majority


Michael J. Sandel (Procedural republic and unencumbered self [1984], 'Present')

Book Reference

Sandel,Michael J.: 'Public Philosophy: Essays' [Harvard 2005], p.171

A Reaction

And so I should hope. Sandel is sort of criticising this view, but it seems obvious that rights of this sort must be basic to any civilised democracy. But how do you decide those rights, if not by a majoritarian decision?