This chapter deals with theories of justice which combine the basic value of ‘respect for persons’ with an emphasis on the role of law in the realization of justice within the mainstream liberal tradition. First there is a relatively brief presentation of Immanuel Kant’s theory of justice and a critique which points out the weakness of his approach when it comes to deciding what ought to be the content of law, and hence of justice. I then deal at greater length with the currently influential theories of Ronald Dworkin who draws on the principle of treating persons ‘with equal concern and respect’ to commend the pursuit of justice through the development, within a legal and constitutional context, of the rights that embody this principle. This too is criticized for underestimating the problem of disagreement as to what ‘respect for persons’ means and what practical measures and institutional arrangement it requires.
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