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Is Political Legitimacy Worth Promoting?

Greene, AR; (2019) Is Political Legitimacy Worth Promoting? NOMOS: The American Society for Political and Legal Philosophy , 61 pp. 65-101. Green open access

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In this paper I develop and defend a new account of political legitimacy. I argue that a regime is legitimate insofar as it achieves quality assent to rule. Assent to rule is an evaluative assessment of the regime, by its subjects, about whether the regime realizes some goods through the exercise of power and authority. Assent is quality assent just when it is consistent with what I call the minimal claim of ruling, namely, the provision of basic security for all subjects. When legitimacy is characterized in these terms, its achievement will be naturally correlated with the realization of key political goods: non-alienation, stability, and political alignment among subjects. What makes this account distinctive, and attractive, is that it captures the crucial insights from both sides of the theoretical divide in the existing literature on political legitimacy, namely (i) that legitimacy is a good-making feature of a regime, but also (ii) that legitimacy depends upon people's subjective attitudes.

Type: Article
Title: Is Political Legitimacy Worth Promoting?
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Publisher version: https://www.jstor.org/journal/nomos
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the version of record. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Dept of Philosophy
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10050957
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