[kon-trak-tair-ee-uh-niz-uh m]
  1. any of various theories that justify moral principles and political choices because they depend on a social contract involving certain ideal conditions, as lack of ignorance or uncertainty.
  2. a general ethical theory that individuals make the right choices under a hypothetical social contract.
Also called con·trac·tu·al·ism [kuh n-trak-choo-uh-liz-uh m] /kənˈtræk tʃu əˌlɪz əm/.
Related formscon·trac·tar·i·an, adjectivecon·trac·tar·i·an·ist, adjective, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018