Political JudgmentAn Introduction
Political Judgment
An Introduction

Politics is the process by which communities of people collectively decide to pursue certain courses of action and avoid others. It is, as such, always a matter of judgment. Courses of action are chosen at least in part because they are somehow thought to be - are adjudged - better than the alternatives, and this simple fact has given rise to a great deal of speculation about the ways in which we determine or judge the relative merits of proposed laws and policies. What exactly is good judgment in politics? What are the characteristics of people who judge especially well? How is good judgment acquired and how can we recognize it in others?

Political Judgment: An Introduction, Peter Steinberger addresses such questions by considering a variety of important developments in the history of political thought: ancient, modern and contemporary. Focusing on the central issue of rationality in politics and, in particular, on the primarily Kantian distinction between "determinate" and "reflective" judgment, this book introduces readers to important and on-going debates about the idea of prudence or practical wisdom as it functions, or ought to function, in the realm of public affairs. It will be essential reading for students and scholars of political theory, the history of political thought, and political ethics.

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  • June 2018
  • 140 pages
  • 138 x 216 mm / 5 x 9 in
Available Formats
  • Hardback $59.95
  • 9781509513109
  • Paperback $19.95
  • 9781509513116
  • Open eBook $19.95
  • 9781509513123
Table of Contents
  • Contents
  • Introduction What is Political Judgment?
  • Chapter 1 Foundations: Plato and Aristotle
  • Chapter 2 The Kantian Problematic
  • Chapter 3 The Arendtian Theory of Judgment
  • Chapter 4 Hermeneutics, Tacit Knowledge and Neo-Rationalism
  • Notes
  • Index
About the Author
Peter J. Steinberger is Robert H. and Blanche Day Ellis Professor of Political Science and Humanities at Reed College
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