The diverse make-up of modern societies has long been a major preoccupation of political philosophy. It has also been a prominent focus for public policy. How should a society provide for the differences exhibited by its population? Should it view them with indifference, or seek to diminish them in the interest of social cohesion, or view them as positive goods that it should facilitate or promote? The answer cannot be simple, partly because the differences captured by the terms ‘difference’ or ‘diversity’ are themselves so diverse.
The essays brought together in this volume focus on one sort of response to difference: toleration. They were written at different times and deal with different aspects of toleration, but they are characterised by a number of common themes.