“The Latest Invasion from Britain”: Young Rawls and His Community of American Ethical Theorists
Abstract

ABSTRACT:

This piece shows how other archives can complement the Rawls Papers at Harvard by reconstructing Rawls’s community of ethical theorists in the 1950s and early 1960s. It casts new light on Rawls’s early immersion in the nascent movement of American Wittgensteinianism at Cornell, and traces his involvement in a transatlantic group of philosophers doing “analytic ethics” with an emphasis on inductive logic in order to rebut the “emotive theory.” It further illustrates how the willingness of Rawls and his contemporaries to question “the naturalistic fallacy” laid the groundwork for Rawls to build his own mature moral theory on natural foundations.