John Rawls

John Bordley Rawls was an American moral and political philosopher in the liberal tradition. His work 'A Theory of Justice' is considered one of the primary texts in political philosophy and ethics.


This list of books are ONLY the books that have been ranked on the lists that are aggregated on this site. This is not a comprehensive list of all books by this author.

  1. 1. A Theory of Justice

    This book presents a seminal work in modern political philosophy, where the author proposes a model of justice that, despite being egalitarian, respects individual rights. The author's "veil of ignorance" thought experiment, which suggests designing society from an original position where no one knows their future place in society, has been particularly influential. The author argues that this would lead to a system where each individual is assured basic liberties and socio-economic inequalities are only allowed if they benefit the least advantaged members of society.

    The 1587th Greatest Book of All Time
  2. 2. Justice As Fairness

    The book presents a theory of justice that emphasizes a fair system of cooperation over time, from one generation to the next. The author argues that the principles of justice are those that free and rational persons would accept in an initial position of equality, as defined by the "original position" and the "veil of ignorance." This theoretical approach ensures that no one is advantaged or disadvantaged by natural fortune or social circumstances in the selection of principles. The work elaborates on two fundamental principles of justice: the first guarantees equal basic liberties, while the second arranges social and economic inequalities so that they are both reasonably expected to be to everyone's advantage and attached to positions open to all under conditions of fair equality of opportunity.

    The 6772nd Greatest Book of All Time