2009 | Świat i Słowo 2009, nr 1 (12) | 277-292
Article title

Tolerancja jako wyznacznik tożsamości... społeczeństwa obywatelskiego – Michaela Walzera wizja tolerancji

Title variants
Tolerance as an Indicator of Identity of Civil Society. Michael Walzer’s Conception of Tolerance
Languages of publication
Civil society is a sphere of human relations in the area of the state that is essentially different from the state. It is open to participation on the part of free and equal citizens, who co-operate on behalf of the common good. It is a sphere of differences, divisions and conflicts, and at the same time a sphere of creating relationships between citizens. In order to ensure a good co-existence within society, tolerance is necessary. Michael Walzer, an American philosopher working on ethics, political and social philosophy, stresses that fact. This article is a reconstruction of his views on the significance of tolerance for civil society. Walzer gives several definitions of tolerance, then he describes five forms of the government of tolerance and says about three countries that do not match any of these forms. Walzer regards civil religion as especially important for the identity of civil society. He separates the sphere of the state and the sphere of political community, which is civil society in fact. He stresses pluralism as an important feature of civil society and says that tolerance is so vital because it allows citizens to co-exist peacefully in society, so they can build strong relationships and co-operate with regard to the common good.
  • Katolicki Uniwersytet Lubelski Jana Pawła II, Aleje Racławickie 14, 20-950 Lublin,
  • M. Walzer, Spór o społeczeństwo obywatelskie, [w:] J.Szacki (red.), Ani książę, ani kupiec: obywatel, Znak, Kraków 1997, s. 84-106.
  • M. Walzer, O tolerancji, przeł. T. Basznia, Państwowy Instytut Wydawniczy, Warszawa 1999.
  • M. Walzer, Interpretacja i krytyka społeczna, przeł. M. Rakusa-Suszczewski i M. Szuster, Fundacja Aletheia, Warszawa 2002, s. 66.
  • L.Kacprzak, K.Pająk, Społeczeństwo obywatelskie. Interdyscyplinarny wymiar problemu, Państwowa Wyższa Szkoła Zawodowa im. Stanisława Staszica w Pile, Piła 2006.
  • M.Walzer, Obligations. Essays on Disobedience, War and Citizenship, Simon&Schuster, New York 1971.
Document Type
Publication order reference
YADDA identifier
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