Quelques souvenirs de John Rawls

Serge-Christophe Kolm

Table of Contents


These lines briefly relate the scientific part of nearly fourty years of discussions with John Rawls. Their interest – if they have any – can rest in three contributions. First, this relation shows the genesis of John Rawls’ concepts and thought. Second, it implies a criticism of these concepts and shows how Rawls faced it. Finally, this desciption exhibits an essential feature of the history of polical philosophy, the idiosyncrasis of English-language thinking in this domain, in opposition to the rest of the world and in particular to the thought developed in France. Indeed, utilitarianism has only been the philosophy of English-language scholars. Rawls first is the philosopher who will have tried to put English-language political philosophy on the path of normality based on liberty and equality after two centuries of Benthamite dogmatism.

Key words

justice, equality, liberty, utilitarism

JEL Classification: B31, D63