Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Oxford Studies in Political Philosophy, Volume 1$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

David Sobel, Peter Vallentyne, and Steven Wall

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780199669530

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199669530.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use (for details see www.oxfordscholarship.com/page/privacy-policy).date: 14 December 2018

Value-freeness and Value-neutrality in the Analysis of Political Concepts

Value-freeness and Value-neutrality in the Analysis of Political Concepts

Chapter:
(p.278) (p.279) 11 Value-freeness and Value-neutrality in the Analysis of Political Concepts
Source:
Oxford Studies in Political Philosophy, Volume 1
Author(s):

Ian Carter

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199669530.003.0012

This chapter defends the use of value-free and value-neutral concepts in political philosophy. A concept is value-free if it is defined without using evaluative terms, whereas a concept is value-neutral if its use does not imply the superiority of any of a range of divergent ethical positions. Each of these two features is a methodological desideratum in the case of certain concepts in certain theoretical contexts. For example, freedom can be fruitfully defined in a value-free way, whereas justice cannot. On the other hand, either of these concepts might have a high degree of value-neutrality. Those who are skeptical about value-freeness or value-neutrality have often conflated the two. They have also sometimes conflated the notions of value-freeness and value-neutrality with the more demanding idea of “value-independence”—that is, the complete independence of a definition from all ethical concerns. Neither value-freeness nor value-neutrality entails value-independence.

Keywords:   concepts, conceptual analysis, evaluation, value-freedom, value-freeness, neutrality, value-neutrality, grounding, supervenience

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .