Acknowledgments

BROWN UNIVERSITY is a dynamic and exciting place to do political philosophy. I have benefited enormously from discussions with David Estlund and Charles Larmore in philosophy, and John Tomasi, Corey Brettschneider, and Sharon Krause in political science. John in particular was instrumental in my coming to Brown, so I owe him thanks for bringing and keeping me here. John and Dave have done much to mentor me and help me develop as a professional. I have also benefited from discussions and exchanges with, and criticisms from, the excellent postdoctoral research fellows we have been fortunate to host: Sahar Ahktar, Barbara Buckinx, Yvonne Chui, Mark Koyama, Hélène Landemore, Emily Nacol, Dennis Rasmussen, Andrew Volmert, and Daniel Wewers. In addition, graduate students Sean Aas, Daniel Berntson, Derek Bowman, Dana Howard, Jennifer Ikuta, Jed Silverstein, Timothy Syme, and Joshua Tropp helped to shape this book. Thanks are also due to Mark Gladis, Thomas Lewis, and Mark Suchman. For inviting me to speak on some of the issues presented in this book, I thank the undergraduates at the Janus Forum and Philosophy Undergraduate Club.

My colleagues generously held a workshop devoted to my manuscript. The commentators at the workshop—Richard Arneson, Julia Driver, and David Estlund—gave me highly valuable feedback. I have long been a fan of Dick’s and Julia’s work, and it was an honor to have them provide comments, criticisms, and encouragement for mine. Corey organized the conference, Dina Egge took care of the logistics, and Corey, John, and Sharon chaired sessions. Thanks go to them and also to everyone who attended.

I thank Bryan Caplan for his book The Myth of the Rational Voter. I have been fascinated by the logic and ethics of collective action for a long time, but if I had not read Caplan, I never would have written this book.

During the summers of 2008 and 2009, I had the opportunity to lecture on some of these ideas before large interdisciplinary groups of graduate students as part of The Social Change Workshop, sponsored by The Institute for Humane Studies, George Mason University. I thank Jonathan Fortier for inviting me to participate.

Will Wilkinson, who hosts Free Will, a philosophy talk show, on Bloggingheads.tv, discussed morally mandatory abstention with me shortly after my “Polluting the Polls” article was accepted for publication. I am pretty sure I would not have written this book had I never

-ix-

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The Ethics of Voting
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Acknowledgments ix
  • Introduction Voting as An Ethical Issue 1
  • Chapter One- Arguments for a Duty to Vote 15
  • Chapter Two- Civic Virtue without Politics 43
  • Chapter Three- Wrongful Voting 68
  • Chapter Four- Deference and Abstention 95
  • Chapter Five- For the Common Good 112
  • Chapter Six- Buying and Selling Votes 135
  • Chapter Seven- How Well Do Voters Behave? 161
  • Afterword to the Paperback Edition How to Vote Well 179
  • Notes 185
  • References 205
  • Index 213
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