“Homelessness and the issue of freedom”


  1. Read Jeremy Waldron “Homelessness and the issue of freedom”, from Liberal Rights: Collected Papers (1981-1991) (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993), pp.309-338. (File attached)
  2. Write an essay that answers the following three questions:
  3. What particular idea/concept of freedom does Waldron deploy in this paper? Carefully explain it.
  4. How does Waldron link this idea/concept of freedom to the rules of private and common property to criticize our treatment of homeless people? Why does Waldron think that those rules render the homeless comprehensively unfree?
  5. Do you agree or disagree with Waldron’s conclusion that a society genuinely committed to the freedom of its citizens ought to worry as much about homelessness as it should about “torture, the suppression of dissent, and other violations of human rights” (p.309)? Why? Why not? Explain and defend your reasoning. Homelessness and the Issue of Freedom Paper.

While peer-reviewed academic sources might help you to answer these questions, this assignment is not a research paper. Your primary focus should be on a close and careful reading of Waldron’s text (questions i. and ii.), followed by your original analysis/evaluation (question iii.). Rely mainly on other course readings and, if necessary, other relevant peer-reviewed academic sources pertaining to freedom, private and common property, and homelessness.

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