Alasdair MacIntyre’s antiliberalism in the light of the theoryof modernity proposed by Ágnes Heller and Ferenc Fehér
Alasdair MacIntyre’s critical analysis of modern morality and modern politics has inspired the author of this paper to rethink the role, place and importance of the liberal thought in the contemporary, radically contingent world, which is quite often described as postmodern. Is it true, as MacIntyre maintains, that contemporary liberalism is the main threat to a just society? The author defends liberalism perceived as one of the most important foundations of modern culture. He argues from the position of the theory of modernity proposed by Ágnes Heller and Ferenc Fehér, who present the modern world as a fragile and unstable construction based on the foundation of freedom (contingency). Since they identify themselves as liberal thinkers, they recognize the prospect of realizing the idea of justice in the very same facts that MacIntyre criticizes: that modernity is inhabited by contingent individuals, who belong to equally contingent societies, as well as in the fact that modernity is extremely diversified, fragmentary and plagued by internal conflicts. This results in the unique condition of modern society which is never as it “should be” and its members constantly strive to make it more just. Such endless correction of injustice inscribed in the modern world is the internal dynamic of modern society, which cannot be restricted. Any attempt to restrict this dynamic (an arbitrary imposition of a particular model of just social arrangements) is a threat to this society itself.