David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Journal of Philosophy 102 (3):126-154 (2005)
We here address the question of how, for a theory of justice, a concern for the promotion of equality can be combined with a concern for making people as well off as possible. Leximin, which requires making the worst off position as well off as possible, is one way of combining a concern for making people’s lives go well with a special concern for those who are especially poorly off. Many egalitarians, however, reject its near-monomaniacal focus on the worst off position (to the exclusion of other poorly off persons). In this paper, we explore the possibility of combining a weak kind of egalitarianism with a weak kind of efficiency requirement in a way that avoids leximin’s obsession with the worst off position. For example, one may consider solving all cases where efficiency is not at issue by choosing the alternative that is most equal according to the Gini-coefficient or some other well-established inequality measure. All standard inequality measures sometimes judge an alternative as more equal than another alternative even though the latter maximizes the benefits of the worst off. Thus it may seem like a promising way of avoiding the leximin approach within an egalitarian framework. Surprisingly, given certain generally accepted assumptions, this turns out to be impossible. The only possible way of combining weak egalitarianism with weak efficiency requires, we shall show, the rejection of a widely accepted—but perhaps dubious—contraction consistency condition on justice or the acceptance of some version of the leximin principle
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Bertil Tungodden & Peter Vallentyne (2007). Person-Affecting Paretian Egalitarianism with Variable Population Size. In John Roemer & Kotaro Suzumura (eds.), Intergenerational Equity and Sustainability. Palgrave Publishers Ltd.
Marc Fleurbaey, Bertil Tungodden & Peter Vallentyne (2009). On the Possibility of Nonaggregative Priority for the Worst Off. Social Philosophy and Policy 26 (1):258-285.
Peter Vallentyne & Bertil Tungodden (2006). Who Are the Least Advantaged? In Nils Holtug & Kasper Lippert-Rasmussen (eds.), Egalitarianism: New Essays on the Nature and Value of Equality. Oxford University Press
Peter Vallentyne (2005). On the Possibility of Paretian Egalitarianism. Journal of Philosophy 102 (3):126 - 154.
Bertil Tungodden (2003). The Value of Equality. Economics and Philosophy 19 (1):1-44.
Alex Voorhoeve & Marc Fleurbaey (2012). Egalitarianism and the Separateness of Persons. Utilitas 24 (3):381-398.
Chris Armstrong (2011). Citizenship, Egalitarianism and Global Justice. Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy 14 (5):603-621.
Larry S. Temkin (2003). Equality, Priority or What? Economics and Philosophy 19 (1):61-87.
Peter Vallentyne & Bertil Tungodden (2007). Paretian Egalitarianism with Variable Population Size. In John Roemer & Kotaro Suzumura (eds.), Intergenerational Equity and Sustainability. Palgrave Publishers Ltd
Bertil Tungodden (2000). Egalitarianism: Is Leximin the Only Option? Economics and Philosophy 16 (2):229-245.
Added to index2010-01-01
Total downloads35 ( #109,790 of 1,789,721 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #418,435 of 1,789,721 )
How can I increase my downloads?