Pojman, Louis P. “Political Philosophy: Classic and Contemporary Readings” Chapter 6. Rights: McGraw-Hill Higher Education, 2002
Critical analysis 11
Alan Gewirth (1912-2004) born in Manhattan, New York, was a professor Emeritus of Philosophy at the University of Chicago. In addition, Gewirth was a philosopher that challenged the Golden rule; he believed that it did not work. He is best known for his ethical rationalism, in which he presents the “Principle of Generic Consistency”. Alan Gewirth made contributions to moral philosophy and political philosophy. The remarkable philosopher is the author of several works. His key contributions were Human Rights: Essays on Justification and Applications (1982), Reason and Morality (1978), The Community of Rights (1996), Self-Fulfillment (1998), and Human Rights (1984).
The Epistemology of Human Rights was published around the time when individuals questioned the true meaning of human rights. Human rights are rights that every person equally has as they are human. Before the publication of Epistemology of Human Rights, American encountered many events where their rights were violated, such as affirmative action, reverse affirmation action, segregation, and women’s rights. However, rights are privileges that give individuals special advantages, but there are basic types of rights that are distinguished. In The Nature of Value of Rights, Joel Feinberg argues that rights are valid moral claims without argument; rights give people inherent dignity. In contrast, Alasdair Macintyre believes in positive rights and states that sets of rules come into existence at particular circumstances. John Rawls Justice as Fairness, states that the principles of distributive justice are those chosen by a rational agent situated behind a veil of ignorance. Therefore, the different philosopher’s interpretation on rights led to the publication of Epistemology of Human Rights.
The publication of Epistemology of Human Rights was vital. It...