ABSTRACT

Ideals of community are often claimed not simply to rest on assumptions about human nature but – more seriously – to founder upon them. Critics have argued that communitarians entertain utopian notions about the possibility of communal co-operation and unity which render communitarian theory implausible and authoritarian if translated into political practice. Communitarians and anti-communitarians, therefore, take up a variety of positions on the relation of community to human nature. On the communitarian side one can distinguish support for the following.