2011 Winner: Eric Mathison

Eric Mathison attended the University of Calgary for his undergraduate and is Editor in Chief of The Gauntlet, its student publication. Download his winning paper The Insufficiency of Negative Rights for Children and comment on it below.

The Insufficiency of Negative Rights for Children

Abstract: In this paper I argue that negative rights are insufficient for children if the goals of liberal justice are to be fulfilled. I begin by adopting Will Kymlicka’s two preconditions for liberalism: that lives must be led from the inside, and that we must have the freedoms to revise our conceptions of the good life. I focus on the importance of autonomy development in children for those preconditions to obtain. Next I evaluate the right to an open future, which posits that children have the right to choose the type of lives they wish to lead as adults. I argue, however, that approaches of this type cannot fulfill the goals of liberalism because they fail to sufficiently address positive rights.

2011 Short List

Congratulations to the the following applicants whose papers were short listed for the Keenan Prize for 2011!

  • Mike Kryluk – The Dialectic of the Hemlock
  • William Brooke – The Formal Failure and Social Success of Logic
  • Jesse Robertson – Theorizing Progress in the Black Canoe
  • Anthony Sangiuliano – Defending the Kantian Approach to Justification and Legitimacy.

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