عنوان مقاله [English]
Methodologically speaking, the main component of Rawls’s theory of justice is the notion of the original position. However, the most controversial component of the notion of the original position is the notion of hypothetical contract. This paper seeks to elaborate the role of hypothetical contract in the original position in order to show that the imperativeness of hypothetical contract can be defended against some objections. One way to defend the imperativeness of hypothetical contract against the “argument from similarity” is to explain the imperativeness of hypothetical contract by an appeal to further independent reasons with which both sides can agree. Such a defense is also relevant to the distinction between thin and thick veils of ignorance, and can be considered as a reason to prefer the latter to the former. In this paper, I have elaborated the notions of the original position and hypothetical contract, and then pointed to the distinction between thick and thin veils of ignorance, delineating Rawls’s reasons for opting the thick veil. I have then dealt with the question of whether hypothetical contract is imperative by itself or not, and I have then appealed to the argument from similarity to defend a negative answer to the question. I have then elaborated Dworkin’s objection to the imperativeness of hypothetical contract to show that there are cases where hypothetical contract can be taken to be intuitively imperative. The core of the above account consists of reasons that are plausible for both sides, and can transfer their normative force to the hypothetical contract. I have finally presented another objection to the imperativeness of hypothetical contract and a minimal defense of it against the objection.