The Argument For A Politics Of The Common Good

956 WordsApr 29, 20154 Pages
The communitarian argument for a politics of the common good in order to develop and maintain social unity, is based on their idea that the self is constituted by the community. For them, it is not individuals who examine and define their own ends, as such ends have already been developed by, and exist within, a given community. According to communitarians, individuals discover their self by deeply immersing themselves in the community 's way of life, internalising the community 's conceptions of good, and embracing social roles that have been pre-determined by culture or custom – the promotion of which is the duty of the communitarian state. However, communitarians see their societies as vulnerable (Kymlicka 2002: 238), and that the vast array of ends in modern societies stand as a threat to the maintenance of social unity (Kymlicka 2002: 271). They assert that, without a politics of the common good to protect and solidify the ends of the community, social unity will be unsustainable (Kymlicka 2002: 271). One communitarian approach to combating this is through the distribution of resources, which the communitarian state undertakes in line with its preferences, in a bid to prevent individuals within the community from reconsidering or revising ends and the community 's conception of the good life (Kymlicka 2002: 240). For communitarianism, with its focus on preserving and reinforcing the community 's ideas and conceptions of the good and the constitutive self, challenging
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