Shared values, social unity, and liberty

Public Affairs Quarterly 19 (1):25-49 (2005)


May social unity - the unity of a society or social group - be a matter of sharing values? Political philosophers disagree on this topic. Kymlicka answers: No. Devlin and Rawls answer: Yes. It is argued that given one common 'summative' account of sharing values a negative answer is correct. A positive answer is correct, however, given the plural subject account of sharing values. Given this account, those who share values are unified in a substantial way by their participation in a joint commitment. Some consequences of such sharing of values for the liberty of the people involved are noted.

Download options


    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 72,855

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library


Added to PP

79 (#150,080)

6 months
1 (#386,031)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Margaret Gilbert
University of California, Irvine

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work

Joint Know-How.Jonathan Birch - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (12):3329–3352.
Plural Agents.Bennett W. Helm - 2008 - Noûs 42 (1):17–49.
Moral Responsibility, Shared Values, and Corporate Culture.James Dempsey - 2015 - Business Ethics Quarterly 25 (3):319-340.

View all 9 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Values in Nature. Rolston - 1981 - Environmental Ethics 3 (2):113-128.
Sociality, Unity, Objectivity.Margaret Gilbert - 2001 - The Proceedings of the Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy 11:153-160.
Liberty as Power.Preston King - 1999 - Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy 2 (3):1-25.
All is Not Relative: Essential Shared Values and the Press.Deni Elliott - 1988 - Journal of Mass Media Ethics 3 (1):28 – 32.
Liberal Values Vs. Liberal Social Philosophy.Nicholas Capaldi - 1990 - Philosophy and Theology 4 (3):283-296.
Asch and the Balance of Values.Bert H. Hodges - 2004 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 27 (3):343-344.