This essay focuses on Robert Nisbet’s criticism of John Rawls, which has so far been little investigated in political studies. While recognizing the innovative nature of his ethical-political theory, Nisbet, from a conservative perspective, considers Rawls as the last of Rousseau’s disciples, not only for his contractarianism, but above all for his cult of egalitarianism. Rawls, concludes Nisbet, following Rousseau’s example, conceives equality as the foundation of a real philosophy of history and an idea of centralized government, which is typical of modern political rationalism.
Keywords: Nisbet, Rawls, Rousseau, Egalitarianism, Political Rationalism.
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