KARL R. POPPERAND THE MORAL DUTY TO DEFEND DEMOCRACY
In The Open Society and Its Enemies Austrian philosopher Karl R. Popper statesthat it was the Greek who started the transition from the close to the open societysomewhere during the 5th century B.C. Even though their democratic experiment did not survive, we are still puzzled by the same issues as they were. For instance the question “who should rule in a democracy?” According to Popper this is the wrong question to ask. We should find an answer to another one instead: what should be done to avoid the danger of tyranny? A real democracy goes beyond its etymological meaning - the power of the people - and stresses the value of an institutional framework meant to safeguard us against dictatorship. Fighting the latter becomes a moral obligation, and the principle of critical rationalism offers the means to do it. This paper aims to stress the importance of Popper’s critique of totalitarianism for the challenged societies of our own time.
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