Theories of Justice (LAWS5168)


This unit of study aims to provide students with a critical understanding of contemporary philosophical debates about justice. The unit focuses on liberal conceptions of justice and critiques thereof. It examines various moral values in terms of which the law might be assessed. The moral values that it considers include liberty, community, utility, fairness and equality. Among the themes that it explores are the limits of and connections between these ideals, the prospects for their realisation in contemporary societies as well as the politics with which each is associated.

Our courses that offer this unit of study

Further unit of study information


2x2hr seminars/week for 10 weeks


Structured class-participation (10%), emails about readings (10%), 1500wd mid-semester essay (20%) and 4000wd final essay (60%)

Faculty/department permission required?


Unit of study rules


LAWS3077 or LAWS3468

Additional Information

This unit satisfies the Juriprudence/Part 3 requirement of the JD.

Study this unit outside a degree

Non-award/non-degree study

If you wish to undertake one or more units of study (subjects) for your own interest but not towards a degree, you may enrol in single units as a non-award student.

Cross-institutional study

If you are from another Australian tertiary institution you may be permitted to underake cross-institutional study in one or more units of study at the University of Sydney.