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Social Theory and Practice

Volume 39, Issue 1, January 2013

Catriona McKinnon
Pages 1-18
DOI: 10.5840/soctheorpract20133911

Vertical Toleration as a Liberal Idea

This paper argues that the direct, vertical toleration of certain types of citizen by the Rawlsian liberal state is appropriate and required in circumstances in which these types of citizen pose a threat to the stability of the state. By countering the claim that vertical toleration is redundant given a commitment to the Rawlsian version of the liberal democratic ideal, and by articulating a version of that ideal that shows this claim to be false, the paper reaffirms the centrality of vertical toleration in the Rawlsian liberal account of state-citizen relations.

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