In the first part of the paper Rawls’ conception of a ,reflective equilibrium" with our „considered moral judgements“ is criticized. Moral judgements cannot form a court of appeal for the justification of moral principles, since they are themselves in need of justification. An analysis of the meaning of the sentences in which moral judgements are expressed is called for in order to establish their method of justification.
In the second part of the paper the consequence which Rawls' repudiation of semantic analysis has had for his conception of the „original position“ is discussed. In retrogressive extension of his four-stage-sequence a zero-stage is postulated which represents the moral point of view. At this stage the reasons would have to be given for adopting the original position and for conceiving it with just those characteristics that Rawls has assumed. Only thus can the advantages and disadvantages of these characteristics be analytically assessed.
© 1979 by Lucius & Lucius, Stuttgart