Liberal democracy is often defended because it secures freedom, order, and prosperity. Without slighting these solid achievements, Liberal Virtues responds to those who worry that the theory and practice of free self-government neglect the importance of community and citizen virtues. Professor Macedo offers a critical interpretation and original defence of the great tradition of individual freedom associated with John Locke and the founders of the American
republic. At the moral core of the theory and practice of the rule of law and liberal constitutionalism lies a commitment to public reasonableness: politics is an exercise in
reason-giving and not the assertion of raw power. The author defends a theory of public justification, and explains how the legal and political institutions of liberal democracy embody a collective commitment to reasonableness. He concludes by considering the types of personality and society associated with life in a pluralistic, open, and tolerant liberal society.
`Macedo's exemplary study stands as a brilliant emminent critique of the hitherto dominant school of Anglo-American liberalism.' Times Higher Education Supplement