Beginning with some key insights into what we mean by toleration, Cohen goes on to investigate what should be tolerated and why. We should not be free to do everythingÑmurder, rape, and theft, for clear examples, should not be tolerated. But should we be free to take drugs, hire a prostitute, or kill ourselves? Should our governments outlaw such activities or tolerate them? Should they tolerate “outsourcing” of jobs or importing of goods or put embargos on other countries? Cohen examines these difficult questions, among others, and argues that we should look to principles of toleration to guide our answers. These principles tell us when limiting freedom is acceptableÑthat is, they indicate the proper limits of toleration. Cohen deftly explains the main principles on offer and indicates why one of these stands out from the rest.
This wide-ranging new book on an important topic will be essential reading for students taking courses in philosophy, political science and religious studies.