The history of international relations is characterized by widespread injustice. What implications does this have for those living in the present? Should contemporary states pay reparations to the descendants of the victims of historic wrongdoing? Many writers have dismissed the moral urgency of rectificatoryjustice in a domestic context, as a result of their forward-looking accounts of distributive justice. Rectifying International Injustice argues that historical international injustice raises a series of distinct theoretical problems, as a result of (...) the popularity of backward-looking accounts of distributive justice in an international context. It lays out three morally relevant forms of connection with the past, based in ideas of benefit, entitlement and responsibility. Those living in the present may have obligations to pay compensation insofar as they are benefiting, and others are suffering, as a result of the effects of historic injustice. They may be in possession of property which does not rightly belong to them, but to which others have inherited entitlements. Finally, they may be members of political communities which bear collective responsibility for an ongoing failure to rectify historic injustice. Rectifying International Injustice considers each of these three linkages with the past in detail. It examines the complicated relationship between rectificatoryjustice and distributive justice, assesses the appropriateness of judging the past by contemporary moral standards, and argues that many of those who resist cosmopolitan demands for the global redistribution of resources have failed to appreciate the extent to which past wrongdoing undermines the legitimacy of contemporary resource holdings. (shrink)
This introductory chapter provides an overview of the recent debate about responsibility and distributive justice. It traces the recent philosophical focus on distributive justice to John Rawls and examines two arguments in his work which might be taken to contain the seeds of the focus on responsibility in later theories of distributive justice. It examines Ronald Dworkin's ‘equality of resources’, the ‘luck egalitarianism’ of Richard Arneson and G. A. Cohen, as well as the criticisms of their work (...) put forward by Elizabeth Anderson, Marc Fleurbaey, Susan Hurley, and Jonathan Wolff. Key concepts such as responsibility (individual and collective), luck (thin and thick; brute and option), control, desert, and equality of opportunity are delineated, and the implementation of responsibility-sensitive accounts of justice is considered. The chapters of this book are positioned in relation to the wider literature on responsibility and distributive justice, and a brief outline of the chapters is provided. (shrink)
Many people in the developing world access essential health services either partially or primarily through programs run by international non-governmental organizations (INGOs). Given that such programs are typically designed and run by Westerners, and funded by Western countries and their citizens, it is not surprising that such programs are regarded by many as vehicles for Western cultural imperialism. In this chapter, I consider this phenomenon as it emerges in the context of development and humanitarian aid programs, particularly those delivering medical (...) treatment, nutrition and access to clean water. I argue that in order to avoid contributing to cultural imperialism, INGOs have a duty to ensure that they do not offer services in a way that requires their beneficiaries to choose between accessing essential health services and violating or otherwise undermining traditional norms and practices which have significance for their beneficiaries. Following Onora O'Neill, I argue that offers requiring such a choice are effectively “unrefuseable” and so coercive. INGOs therefore, must avoid making such offers, and can accomplish this by means of an iterated process of reciprocal negotiation under conditions of equality, in which both the INGOs’ and the beneficiaries’ deep values and concerns play a role. In essence, I claim that employing such a process is a requirement of procedural justice, given the non-ideal conditions in which INGOs must operate. (shrink)
What is justice? -- The idea of justice in the Holy Scriptures -- Platonic justice -- Aristotle's doctrine of justice -- The natural-law doctrine before the tribunal of science -- A "dynamic" theory of natural law -- Absolutism and relativism in philosophy and politics -- Value judgments in the science of law -- The law as a specific social technique -- Why should the law be obeyed? -- The pure theory of the law and analytical jurisprudence (...) -- Law, state, and justice in the pure theory of law -- Causality and retribution -- Causality and imputation -- Science and politics. (shrink)
Introduction : doing the right thing -- Utilitarianism -- Libertarianism -- Locke : property rights -- Markets and morals : surrogate motherhood, military service -- Kant : freedom as autonomy -- Rawls : justice as fairness -- Distributive justice : equality, entitlement, and merit -- Affirmative action : reverse discrimination? -- Aristotle : justice and virtue -- Ability, disability, and discrimination : cheerleaders and golf carts -- Justice, community, and membership -- Moral argument and liberal toleration (...) -- Morality and law : same-sex marriage, for and against. (shrink)
Are positive duties to help others in need mere informal duties of virtue or can they also be enforceable duties of justice? In this paper I defend the claim that some positive duties (which I call basic positive duties) can be duties of justice against one of the most important prin- cipled objections to it. This is the libertarian challenge, according to which only negative duties to avoid harming others can be duties of justice, whereas positive duties (...) (basic or nonbasic) must be seen, at best, as informal moral requirements or recommendations. I focus on the contractarian version of the libertarian challenge as recently presented by Jan Narveson. I claim that Narveson’s contractarian construal of libertarianism is not only intuitively weak, but is also subject to decisive internal problems. I argue, in particular, that it does not pro- vide a clear rationale for distinguishing between informal duties of virtue and enforceable duties of justice, that it can neither successfully justify libertarianism’s protection of negative rights nor its denial of positive ones, and that it fails to undermine the claim that basic positive duties are duties of global justice. -/- . (shrink)
What should our theorizing about social justice aim at? Many political philosophers think that a crucial goal is to identify a perfectly just society. Amartya Sen disagrees. In The Idea of Justice, he argues that the proper goal of an inquiry about justice is to undertake comparative assessments of feasible social scenarios in order to identify reforms that involve justice-enhancement, or injustice-reduction, even if the results fall short of perfect justice. Sen calls this the “comparative (...) approach” to the theory of justice. He urges its adoption on the basis of a sustained critique of the former approach, which he calls “transcendental.” In this paper I pursue two tasks, one critical and the other constructive. First, I argue that Sen’s account of the contrast between the transcendental and the comparative approaches is not convincing, and second, I suggest what I take to be a broader and more plausible account of comparative assessments of justice. The core claim is that political philosophers should not shy away from the pursuit of ambitious theories of justice (including, for example, ideal theories of perfect justice), although they should engage in careful consideration of issues of political feasibility bearing on their practical implementation. (shrink)
In his important new book National responsibility and global justice, David Miller presents a systematic challenge to existing theories of global justice. In particular, he argues that cosmopolitan egalitarianism must be rejected. Such views, Miller maintains, would place unacceptable burdens on the most productive political communities, undermine national self-determination, and disincentivize political communities from taking responsibility for their fate. They are also impracticable and quite unrealistic, at least under present conditions. Miller offers an alternative account that conceives global (...)justice in terms of a minimum set of basic rights that belong to human beings everywhere. Primary responsibility for securing such rights for an individual lies with his or her state, but in so far as these rights go unprotected, responsibilities for fulfilling them may fall on outsiders. While less ambitious that cosmopolitan egalitarian justice, Miller argues that his own view would nevertheless enable us to articulate what is most morally objectionable about our current world. In this article it is argued that none of Miller's critiques of cosmopolitan egalitarianism is effective, and that while certainly preferable to the status quo, a world governed by Miller's principles is not an attractive ideal. (shrink)
John Rawls (1921-2002) was one of the 20th century's most important philosophers and continues to be among the most widely discussed of contemporary thinkers. His work, particularly A Theory of Justice, is integral to discussions of social and international justice, democracy, liberalism, welfare economics, and constitutional law, in departments of philosophy, politics, economics, law, public policy, and others. Samuel Freeman is one of Rawls's foremost interpreters. This volume contains nine of his essays on Rawls and Rawlsian justice, (...) two of which are previously unpublished. Freeman places Rawls within historical context in the social contract tradition, addresses criticisms of his positions, and discusses the implications of his views on issues of distributive justice, liberalism and democracy, international justice, and other subjects. This collection will be useful to the wide range of scholars interested in Rawls and theories of justice. (shrink)
Amartya Sen has recently leveled a series of what he alleges to be quite serious very general objections against Rawls, Rawlsian fellow travelers, and other social contract accounts of justice. In The Idea of Justice, published in 2009, Sen specifically charges his target philosophical views with what calls transcendentalism, procedural parochialism, and with being mistakenly narrowly focused on institutions. He also thinks there is a basic incoherence—arising from a version of Derek Parfit’s Identity Problem—internal to the Rawslian theoretical (...) apparatus. Sen would have political philosophy pursue intersocietal comparisons of relative justice more directly and in the manner of social choice theory. Yet the positive argument he develops in support of this method is quite thin. That aside, Sen’s polemical strategy of inflicting death by a thousand cuts is ineffective against the Rawlsian paradigm. For, as I show herein, none of these criticisms have the force we might be led to expect. (shrink)
There are many interesting questions to ask about cosmopolitan arguments. Is it true that the sphere of moral concern is global? Which sets of actions would realize the outcomes of global justice that cosmopolitans seek? Are those sets of actions feasible, and when we compare them against each other, which is the most feasible? The question I want to focus on in this paper is a question of the latter kind, but I want to take a slightly unique approach (...) to it. I shall ask which of the two dominant arguments for duties to alleviate global poverty, supposing their premises were generally accepted, would be more likely to produce the desired outcome. I take Pogge's argument for obligations grounded in principles of justice, a "contribution" argument, and Campbell's argument for obligations grounded in principles of humanity, an "assistance" argument, to be prototypical. Were people to accept the premises of Campbell's argument, how likely would they be to support governmental reform in policies for international aid, or to make individual contributions to international aid organizations? And I ask the same question, mutatis mutandis, for Pogge's argument. (shrink)
Compelling research in international relations and international political economy on global warming suggests that one part of any meaningful effort to radically reverse current trends of increasing green house gas (GHG) emissions is shared policies among states that generate costs for such emissions in many if not most of the world’s regions. Effectively employing such policies involves gaining much more extensive global commitments and developing much stronger compliance mechanism than those currently found in the Kyoto Protocol. In other words, global (...) warming raises the prospect that we need a global form of political authority that could coordinate the actions of states in order to address this environmental threat. This in turn suggests that any serious effort to mitigate climate change will entail new limits on the sovereignty of states. In this book I focus on the normative question of whether or not we have clear moral reasons to bind ourselves together in such a supranational form of political association. I argue that one can employ familiar liberal arguments for the moral legitimacy of political order at the state level to show that we do have a duty to support such a global political project. Even if one adopts the premises employed by the most influential forms of liberal scepticism to the ideas of global political and distributive justice, such as those advanced by John Rawls and Thomas Nagel, it is clear that the threat of global warming has expanded the scope of justice. We now have a global and demanding duty of justice to create the political conditions that would allow us to collectively address our impact on the Earth’s atmosphere. (shrink)
I argue that existing views in the political equality debate are inadequate. I propose an alternative approach to equality and argue its superiority to the competing approaches. I apply the approach to some issues in global justice relating to global poverty and to the inability of some countries to develop as they would like. In this connection I discuss institutions of international trade, sovereign debt and global reserves and I focus particularly on the WTO, IMF and World Bank.
This book aims to answer the question of why, and by what right, some people punish others. With a groundbreaking new theory, Matravers argues that the justification of punishment must be embedded in a larger political and moral theory. He also uses the problem of punishment to undermine contemporary accounts of justice.
In this article, I develop a new account of the liberal view that principles of justice (in general) are meant to justify state coercion, and consider its implications for the question of global socioeconomic justice (in particular). Although contemporary proponents of this view deny that principles of socioeconomic justice apply globally, on my newly developed account this conclusion is mistaken. I distinguish between two types of coercion, systemic and interactional, and argue that a plausible theory of global (...)justice should contain principles justifying both. The justification of interactional coercion requires principles regulating interstate interference; that of systemic coercion requires principles of global socioeconomic justice. I argue that the proposed view not only helps us make progress in the debate on global justice, but also offers an independently compelling and systematic account of the function and conditions of applicability of justice. -/- . (shrink)
Almost every country today contains adherents of different religions and different secular conceptions of the good life. Is there any alternative to a power struggle among them, leading most probably to either civil war or repression? The argument of this book is that justice as impartiality offers a solution. According to the theory of justice as impartiality, principles of justice are those principles that provide a reasonable basis for the unforced assent of those subject (...) to them. The object of this book is to set the theory out, explain its rationale, and respond to a variety of criticism that have been made of it. As the second volume of his work-in-progress, A Treatise on Social Justice, this work lies at the heart of a thriving academic debate which the author has played a key role in shaping. (shrink)
Does justice require that individuals get what they deserve? Serena Olsaretti brings together new essays by leading moral and political philosophers examining the relation between desert and justice; they also illuminate the nature of distributive justice, and the relationship between desert and other values, such as equality and responsibility.
In my 1990 work – Marxism, Morality, and Social Justice – I argued for four modifications of Rawls’s principles of social justice and rendered a modified version of his theory in four principles, the first of which is the Basic Rights Principle demanding the protection of people’s security and subsistence rights. In both his Political Liberalism (1993) and Justice as Fairness (2001) Rawls explicitly refers to my version of his theory, clearly accepting three of my four proposed (...) modifications but rejecting the fourth -- the demand for social and economic (in addition to political) democracy – on grounds that it automatically justifies socialism as opposed to capitalism. I argue, contrary to Rawls, that it is not true that this demand automatically picks (democratic) socialism as the preferable socioeconomic/political system and that a Social and Economic Democracy Principle demanding workplace and neighborhood democracy is officially neutral between these two systems … although plausible empirical assumptions may, indeed, favor the former. I then reprise my second version of Rawls’s theory of social justice which is composed of the following principles arranged in a very strong order of priority (if not quite a lexical order): (1) Basic Rights Principle, (2) Equal Basic Liberties Principle, (3) Fair Equality of Opportunity Principle, (4) Modified Difference Principle, and (5) Social and Economic Democracy Principle. (shrink)
Mark Rowlands argues that, contrary to the dominant view, a Rawlsian theory of justice can legitimately be applied to animals. One of the implications of doing so, Rowlands argues, is an end to animal experimentation. I will argue, contrary to Rowlands, that under a Rawlsian theory there may be some circumstances where it is justifiable to use animals as experimental test subjects (where the individual animals are benefited by the experiments).
The institutional theory of property is that view that property rights are entirely and essentially conventional and are the creatures of states and coercively backed legal systems. In this paper, I argue that, although states and legal systems have a valuable role in deﬁning property rights, the institutional story is not the whole story. Rather, the property rights hat we have reason to recognize as part of justice are partly conventional in character and partly rooted in universal human interests (...) and dispositions. (shrink)
Steering a middle course between cosmopolitanism and a narrow nationalism, the book develops an original theory of global justice that also addresses controversial topics such as immigration and reparations for historic wrongdoing.
Epicurus is one of the first social contract theorists, holding that justice is an agreement neither to harm nor be harmed. He also says that living justly is necessary and sufficient for living pleasantly, which is the Epicurean goal. Some say that there are two accounts of justice in Epicurus -- one as a personal virtue, the other as a virtue of institutions. I argue that the personal virtue derives from compliance with just social institutions, and so we (...) need to (...) attribute only one account of justice to Epicurus. I show how this interpretation makes sense of claims about justice by Epicurus and his followers, including Hermarchus, Lucretius, and Diogenes of Oinoanda. (shrink)
Towards Justice and Virtue challenges the rivalry between those who advocate only abstract, universal principles of justice and those who commend only the particularities of virtuous lives. Onora O'Neill traces this impasse to defects in underlying conceptions of reasoning about action. She proposes and vindicates a modest account of ethical reasoning and a reasoned way of answering the question 'who counts?', then uses these to construct linked accounts of principles by which we can move towards just institutions and (...) virtuous lives. (shrink)
A response to G.A. Cohen's argument that a prevailing "ethos" of justice would prevent a Rawlsian just society from having any income inequalities. I suggest that Cohen's argument fails because a Rawlsian ethos would involve correlates of both of Rawls' principles of justice.
I examine how reforming our international tax regime could be an important vehicle by which we can begin to realize global justice. For instance, eliminating tax havens, tax evasion, and transfer pricing schemes are all important to ensure accountability and to support democracies. I argue that the proposals concerning taxation reform are likely to be more effective in tackling global poverty than Thomas Pogge's global resources dividend because they target some of the central issues more effectively. I also discuss (...) many particular proposals for global taxes that have already been floated and implementation prospects and successes. (shrink)
One of the main challenges faced by realists in political philosophy is that of offering an account of authority that is genuinely normative and yet does not consist of a moralistic application of general, abstract ethical principles to the practice of politics. Political moralists typically start by devising a conception of justice based on their pre-political moral commitments; authority would then be legitimate only if political power is exercised in accordance with justice. As an alternative to that dominant (...) approach I put forward the idea that upturning the relationship between justice and legitimacy affords a normative notion of authority that does not depend on a pre-political account of morality, and thus avoids some serious problems faced by mainstream theories of justice. I then argue that the appropriate purpose of justice is simply to specify the implementation of an independently grounded conception of legitimacy, which in turn rests on a context- and practice-sensitive understanding of the purpose of political power. (shrink)
US military intervention and covert action is a significant contributor to global injustice. Discussion of this contributor to global injustice is relatively common in social justice movements. Yet it has been ignored by the global justice literature in political philosophy. This paper aims to fill this gap by introducing the topic into the global justice debate. While the global justice debate has focused on inter-national and supra-national institutions, I argue that an adequate analysis of US military (...) and covert action must focus on domestic institutions of the US. I describe many such institutions including industry lobbying, the ubiquity of US military bases abroad, US programs for training foreign militaries, secrecy of the intelligence and military agencies, pliant news media and government propaganda. . (shrink)
Under what conditions are people responsible for their choices and the outcomes of those choices? How could such conditions be fostered by liberal societies? Should what people are due as a matter of justice depend on what they are responsible for? For example, how far should healthcare provision depend on patients' past choices? What values would be realized and which hampered by making justice sensitive to responsibility? Would it give people what they deserve? Would it advance or hinder (...) equality? The explosion of philosophical interest in such questions has been fuelled by increased focus on individual responsibility in political debates. Political philosophers, especially egalitarians, have responded to such developments by attempting to map out the proper place for responsibility in theories of justice. This book both reflects on these recent developments in normative political theory and moves the debate forwards. (shrink)
Within the literature in green political theory on global environmental threats one can often find dissatisfaction with liberal theories of justice. This is true even though liberal cosmopolitans regularly point to global environmental problems as one reason for expanding the scope of justice beyond the territorial limits of the state. One of the causes for scepticism towards liberal approaches is that many of the most notable anti-cosmopolitan theories are also advanced by liberals. In this paper, I first explain (...) why one of the strongest expressions of liberal anti-cosmopolitanism cannot simply be dismissed because it may fail to support desired environmental ends. The political conception of justice represents one of the most important challenges to cosmopolitanism generally and is thus a serious challenge to viewing global environmental problems in terms of cosmopolitan justice. Second, I will show through the case of anthropogenic global warming that the political conception of justice under current conditions does have clear cosmopolitan implications despite its proponents' claims. (shrink)
In Book III, Part 2 of the Treatise, Hume presents a natural history of justice. Self-interest clearly plays a central role in his account; our ancestors invented justice conventions, he maintains, for the sake of reciprocal advantage. But this is not what makes his approach so novel and attractive. Hume recognizes that prudential considerations are not sufficient to explain how human beings – with our propensities towards temporal discounting and free-riding – could have established conventions for social exchange (...) and collective action in commercial societies. This leads him to develop an innovative account of the role that emotional aversions play in establishing trust between strategically rational agents. (shrink)
Introduction: the foundation of justice -- Practical reason and justifying reasons: on the foundation of morality -- Moral autonomy and the autonomy of morality: toward a theory of normativity after Kant -- Ethics and morality -- The justification of justice: Rawls's political liberalism and Habermas's discourse theory in dialogue -- Political liberty: integrating five conceptions of autonomy -- A critical theory of multicultural toleration -- The rule of reasons: three models of deliberative democracy -- Social justice, justification, (...) and power -- The basic right to justification: toward a constructivist conception of human rights -- Constructions of transnational justice: comparing John Rawls's the law of peoples and Otfried Höffe's democracy in an age of globalisation -- Justice, morality, and power in the global context -- Toward a critical theory of transnational justice. (shrink)
What is justice all about? What is the scope of the concept of justice? What issues can legitimately be evaluated in terms of justice? In her book Justice and the Politics of Difference, Iris Marion Young challenges the concept of justice as defined by John Rawls and used by many others in the philosophical debates that responded to Rawls’s, A Theory of Justice (1971). Is Young’s critique on the prevailing use of the concept of (...)justice and contemporary theories of justice correct? Is her alternative understanding of the concept viable? In this paper I want to critically examine her views on the concept of justice and compare them with a close reading of John Rawls’s use of the concept of justice. The comparison of Young and Rawls will lead me to reconcile their views in terms of the central features of the concept of justice. (shrink)
Kok-Chor Tan argues that the cosmopolitan idea of global justice may be understood in such a way that it can accept nationalist and patriotic commitments. Tan believes that cosmopolitan justice need not deny the worth of the ordinary non-impartial values even as it defends a vision of global egalitarianism. Properly understood, it can set the limits for nationalist and patriotic efforts without denying the moral independence of these partial pursuits.
Focusing on contemporary social issues-- the environmental crisis, population growth and demographic change, and the question of whether reparations are owed to indigenous peoples--this study presents a theory of intergenerational justice that gives citizens duties to past and future generations, and explains what relationships between contemporary generations count as fair.
Many political philosophers hold the Feasible Alternatives Principle (FAP): justice demands that we implement some reform of international institutions P only if P is feasible and P improves upon the status quo from the standpoint of justice. The FAP implies that any argument for a moral requirement to implement P must incorporate claims whose content pertains to the causal processes that explain the current state of affairs. Yet, philosophers routinely neglect the need to attend to actual causal processes. (...) This undermines their arguments concerning moral requirements to reform international institutions. The upshot is that philosophers’ arguments must engage in causal analysis to a greater extent than is typical. -/- [Supplement: Handout available at http://db.tt/fyuVW3Xv]. (shrink)
What is justice? Questions of justice are questions about what people are due, but what that means in practice depends on context. Depending on context, the formal question of what people are due is answered by principles of desert, reciprocity, equality, or need. Justice, thus, is a constellation of elements that exhibit a degree of integration and unity, but the integrity of justice is limited, in a way that is akin to the integrity of a neighborhood (...) rather than that of a building. A theory of justice is a map of that neighborhood. (shrink)
This book addresses the retributive and "orthodox subjectivist" theories that dominate criminal justice theory alongside recent "revisionist" and "postmodern" approaches. Norrie argues that all these approaches, together with their faults and contradictions, stem from their orientation to themes in Kantian moral philosophy. He explores an alternative relational or dialectical approach; examines the work of Ashworth, Duff, Fletcher, Moore, Smith, and Williams; and considers key doctrinal issues.
In a footnote to the first edition of Political Liberalism, John Rawls introduced an example of how public reason could deal with controversial issues. He intended this example to show that his system of political liberalism could deal with such problems by considering only political values, without the introduction of comprehensive moral doctrines. Unfortunately, Rawls chose “the troubled question of abortion” as the issue that would illustrate this. In the case of abortion, Rawls argued, “the equality of women as equal (...) citizens” overrides both “the ordered reproduction of political society over time” and also “the due respect for human life”. It seems fair to say that this was not the best choice of example, and also that Rawls did not argue for his example particularly well: a whole subset of the Rawlsian literature concerns this question alone. Rawls went on to clarify his views on abortion and public reason, but he continued to maintain that a society’s policy on abortion could be decided without introducing comprehensive moral doctrines concerning the moral status of the fetus. The three aims of this paper are to argue: (i) that a society cannot legitimately decide on its abortion policy using purely political values; (ii) that Rawls’ stances on abortion in his two major works are incompatible; and (iii) that neither of Rawls’ conceptions of justice could permit abortion. (shrink)
We all have beliefs, even strong convictions, about what is just and fair in our social arrangements. How should these beliefs and the theories of justice that incorporate them guide our thinking about practical matters of justice? This wide-ranging collection of essays by one of the foremost medical ethicists in the USA explores the claim that justification in ethics, whether of matters of theory or practice, involves achieving coherence between our moral and non-moral beliefs. Amongst the practical issues (...) addressed in the volume are the design of health-care institutions, the distribution of goods between the old and the young, and fairness in hiring and firing. In combining ethical theory and practical ethics this volume will prove especially valuable to philosophers concerned with ethics and applied ethics, political theorists, bioethicists, and others involved in the study of public policy. (shrink)
This book explores the various aspects of social justice--to each according to his rights, to each acording to his desert, and to each according to his need--comparing the writings of Hume, Spencer, and Kropotkin. Miller demonstrates that there are radical differences in outlook on social justice between societies, and that these differences can be explained by reference to features of the social structure.
Respect, Pluralism, and Justice is a series of essays which sketches a broadly Kantian framework for moral deliberation, and then uses it to address important social and political issues. Hill shows how Kantian theory can be developed to deal with questions about cultural diversity, punishment, political violence, responsibility for the consequences of wrongdoing, and state coercion in a pluralistic society.
This paper aims to outline the essential structural traits that a procedural theory of justice for the management of conflicts about values should display in order to combine open-endedness and cogency. To this purpose, it offers an investigation into the characteristics of procedural justice through a critical assessment of John Rawls‟s taxonomy of proceduralism, in terms of perfect, imperfect and pure procedural justice. Given the concessions the two former kinds of proceduralism make to substantive theories, and the (...) potentially misleading characterisation Rawls gave of pure procedural theories of justice, it reformulates the latter category in terms of impure proceduralism. In this case, the theory is required not to pose substantive constraints on the qualities of just outcomes, but is, rather, expected to provide a trans-contextually applicable account of the qualities of just procedures on the basis of an independent criterion of justice. (shrink)
Greg Kavka (1947-1994) was a prominent and influential figure in contemporary moral and political philosophy. The new essays in this volume are concerned with fundamental issues of rational commitment and social justice to which Kavka devoted his work as a philosopher. The essays take Kavka's work as a point of departure and seek to advance the respective debates. The topics include: the relationship between intention and moral action as part of which Kavka's famous 'toxin puzzle' is a focus of (...) discussion, the nature of deterrence, the rationality of morals, contractarian ethics, and the contemporary relevance of Hobbes' political thought. Incorporating important new philosophical statements of problems and fresh contributions to the ongoing debate about rational intention this volume will interest not just philosophers but also political scientists and economists. (shrink)
This new text will encourage students to develop a deeper understanding of the context and the current workings of the criminal justice system. Part One offers a clear, accessible and comprehensive review of the major philosophical aims and sociological theories of punishment, the history of justice and punishment, and the developing perspective of victimology. In Part Two, the focus is on the main areas of the contemporary criminal justice system including the police, the courts and judiciary, prisons, (...) and community penalties. The active engagement of students with the material covered distinguishes this text from others in the area and makes it a real teaching resource and invaluable text. (shrink)
In this fascinating exploration of justice, eminent philosopher D. D. Raphael presents the culmination of a lifetime's study of its evolution, from ancient times to the late twentieth century. His aim is not just historical but philosophical: to illuminate our true understanding of justice. His unique approach examines not only classic texts by such philosophers as Plato, Aristotle, Hume, Mill, and Rawls but also the Bible and Greek tragedy, as well as some neglected but important thought from the (...) modern era. Lucid and stimulating, this work can be enjoyed by anyone interested in moral and political thought, even by those with little to no knowledge of political theory or philosophy. (shrink)
Some authors have called for increased research on various forms of geoengineering as a means to address global climate change. This paper focuses on the question of whether a particular form of geoengineering, namely deploying sulfate aerosols in the stratosphere to counteract some of the effects of increased greenhouse gas concentrations, would be a just response to climate change. In particular, we examine problems sulfate aerosol geoengineering (SAG) faces in meeting the requirements of distributive, intergenerational, and procedural justice. We (...) argue that SAG faces obstacles to meeting the requirements of all three considered kinds of justice, because its impacts can harm some persons and communities much more than others; it poses serious risks to future generations; and SAG is especially prone to unilateral implementation. While we do not claim that SAG ought not to be implemented, we argue that it is the responsibility of proponents of SAG to recognize and address these ethical obstacles before advocating its implementation. (shrink)
Global Economy, Global Justice explores a vital question that is suppressed in most economics texts: "what makes for a good economic outcome?" Neoclassical theory embraces the normative perspective of "welfarism" to assess economic outcomes. This volume demonstrates the fatal flaws of this perspective--flaws that stem from objectionable assumptions about human nature, society and science. Exposing these failures, the book obliterates the ethical foundations of global neoliberalism. George DeMartino probes heterodox economic traditions and philosophy in search of an ethically viable (...) alternative to welfarism. Drawing on the work of Amartya Sen, DeMartino proposes the egalitarian principle of the "global harmonization of capabilities" to guide economics. This principle provides a basis for resisting oppression the world over while nevertheless demanding respect for cultural diversity. DeMartino puts this principle to work adjudicating contemporary debates over global policy regimes, and completes thebook with a set of deeply egalitarian global policies for the year 2025. Global Economy, Global Justice 's engaging prose will appeal to those seeking to understand the intersection between economics and political philosophy. Its focus on the normative foundations of contemporary policy disputes makes it unique in the literature on globalization. (shrink)
In "Torts, Egalitarianism and Distributive Justice" (Ashgate, 2007), Tsachi Keren-Paz presents impressingly detailed analysis that bolsters the case in favour of incremental tort law reform. However, although this book's greatest strength is the depth of analysis offered, at the same time supporters of radical law reform proposals may interpret the complexity of the solution that is offered (and its respective cost) as conclusive proof that tort law can only take adequate account of egalitarian aims at an unacceptably high cost.
In this paper I argue that needs are tremendously salient in developing any plausible account of global justice. I begin by sketching a normative thought experiment that models ideal deliberating conditions. I argue that under such conditions we would choose principles of justice that ensure we are well positioned to be able to meet our needs. Indeed, as the experiment aims to show, any plausible account of distributive justice must make space for the special significance of our (...) needs. I go on to offer some empirical support for this view by looking at the important work of Frohlich and Oppenheimer. I then present an account of our basic needs that can meet a number of goals: for instance, it provides a robust theoretical account of basic needs which can enjoy widespread support, and it can also provide an adequate framework for designing policy about needs, and thus help us to discharge our global obligations. I then briefly discuss the relationship between basic needs and human rights, arguing why the basic needs standard is more fundamental than—and required by—the human rights approach. Finally, I tackle a few important sets of objections to my view, especially some objections concerning distributing our responsibilities for meeting needs. (shrink)
This book makes a significant contribution to the contemporary debate about multiculturalism and democratic theory. It reflects upon the ways in which claims about culture and identity are advanced by immigrants, national minorities, aboriginals, and other groups. It argues that liberal democrats should provide recognition and support for minority cultures and identities, and examines case studies from a number of different societies to show how theorists can learn about justice.
Is it fair to leave the next generation a public debt? Is it defensible to impose legal rules on them through constitutional constraints? From combating climate change to ensuring proper funding for future pensions, concerns about ethics between generations are everywhere. In this volume sixteen philosophers explore intergenerational justice. Part One examines the ways in which various theories of justice look at the matter. These include libertarian, Rawlsian, sufficientarian, contractarian, communitarian, Marxian and reciprocity-based approaches. In Part Two, the (...) authors look more specifically at issues relevant to each of these theories, such as motivation to act fairly towards future generations, the population dimension, the formation of preferences through education and how they impact on our intergenerational obligations, and whether it is fair to rely on constitutional devices. (shrink)
OUP writes: Gillian Brock develops a viable cosmopolitan model of global justice that takes seriously the equal moral worth of persons, yet leaves scope for defensible forms of nationalism and for other legitimate identifications and affiliations people have. Brock addresses two prominent kinds of skeptic about global justice: those who doubt its feasibility and those who believe that cosmopolitanism interferes illegitimately with the defensible scope of nationalism by undermining goods of national importance, such as authentic democracy or national (...) self-determination. The model addresses concerns about implementation in the world, showing how we can move from theory to public policy that makes progress toward global justice. It also makes clear how legitimate forms of nationalism are compatible with commitments to global justice. -/- Global Justice is divided into three central parts. In the first, Brock defends a cosmopolitan model of global justice. In the second, which is largely concerned with public policy issues, she argues that there is much we can and should do toward achieving global justice. She addresses several pressing problems, discussing both theoretical and public policy issues involved with each. These include tackling global poverty, taxation reform, protection of basic liberties, humanitarian intervention, immigration, and problems associated with global economic arrangements. In the third part, she shows how the discussion of public policy issues can usefully inform our theorizing; in particular, it assists our thinking about the place of nationalism and equality in an account of global justice. (shrink)
In recent years, political philosophers have hotly debated whether ordinary citizens have a general pro tanto moral obligation to follow the law. Contemporary philosophers have had less to say about the same question when applied to public officials. In this paper, I consider the latter question in the morally complex context of criminal justice. I argue that criminal justice officials have no general pro tanto moral obligation to adhere to the legal dictates and lawful rules of their offices. (...) My claim diverges not only from the commonsense view about such officials, but also from the positions standardly taken in legal theory and political science debates, which presume there is some general obligation that must arise from legal norms and be reconciled with political realities. I defend my claim by highlighting the conceptual gap between the rigid, generalised, codified rules that define a criminal justice office and the special moral responsibilities of the various moral roles that may underpin that office (such as guard, guardian, healer, educator, mediator, counsellor, advocate, and carer). After addressing four objections to my view, I consider specific contexts in which criminal justice officials are obligated not to adhere to the demands of their offices. Amongst other things, the arguments advanced in this paper raise questions about both the distribution of formal discretion in the criminal justice system and the normative validity of some of the offices that presently exist in criminal justice systems. (shrink)
In the latter half of the twentieth century, there has been a sharp decline in confidence in sentencing principles, due to a questioning of the efficacy of punishment. It has been very difficult to develop consistent, fair, and humane criteria for evaluating legislative, judicial and correctional advancements. The Practice of Punishment offers a comprehensive study of punishment that identifies the principles of sentencing and corrections on which modern correctional systems should be built. The theory of punishment that emerges is built (...) on the view that the central function of the law is to reduce the need to use force in the resolutions of disputes. In this text, Wesley Cragg argues that the proper role of sentencing and sentence administration, as well as policing and adjudication, is to sustain public confidence in the capacity of the law to fulfill that function. Cragg believes that sentencing and corrections should be guided by principles of restorative justice, and he contends that inflicting punishment is in itself not a legitimate objective of criminal law. The Practice of Punishment is a philosophical account of punishment, sentencing, and correction which draws strongly on first-hand experience of penal practices, diverse recent studies, government reports, position papers, crime surveys, and victim concerns. It will be of special interest to applied ethicists, those concerned with the theory and practice of punishment and policing, and criminal justice scholars and lawyers. (shrink)
David Lyons is one of the preeminent philosophers of law active in the United States. This volume comprises essays written over a period of twenty years in which Professor Lyons outlines his fundamental views about the nature of law and its relation to morality and justice. The underlying theme of the book is that a system of law has only a tenuous connection with morality and justice. Contrary to those legal theorists who maintain that no matter how bad (...) the law of a community might be, strict conformity to existing law automatically dispenses "formal" justice, Professor Lyons contends that the law must earn the respect that it demands. Moreover, we cannot, as some would suggest, interpret law in a value-neutral manner. Rather courts should interpret statutes, judicial precedents, and constitutional provisions in terms of values that would justify those laws. In this way officials can promote the justifiability of what they do to people in the name of law, and can help the law live up to its moral pretensions. (shrink)
In Goodness and Justice, Joseph Mendola develops a unified moral theory that defends the hedonism of classical utilitarianism while evading utilitarianism's familiar difficulties by two modifications. His theory incorporates a new form of consequentialism. When, as is common, someone is engaged in conflicting group acts, it requires that one perform the role in that group that is most beneficent. The theory holds that overall value is distribution-sensitive, ceding maximum weight to the well-being of the worst-off sections of sentient lives. (...) It is properly congruent with commonsense intuition and required by the true metaphysics of value, by the unconstituted natural good found in our world. (shrink)
The ideal of distributive justice as a means of ensuring fair distribution of social opportunities is a cornerstone of contemporary feminist theory. Feminists from various disciplines have developed arguments to support the redistribution of the work of care through institutional mechanisms. I discuss the limits of such distribution under the conditions of theories that do not idealize human agents as independent beings. People’s reliance on care, understood as a response to needs, is pervasive and infuses almost all human interaction. (...) I argue that the effect of care on shaping the social opportunities of all individuals is huge, although often invisible. Much of the optimism of theories of distributive justice comes from ignoring or downplaying the way in which care influences most factors of social success. Jonathan Wolff distinguished between three types of resources whose fair distribution is important: internal, external and structural. Care, I argue, does not fit well in any of these types. Inseparably interwoven with relational realities, care cuts across these categories and thus poses a challenge to the feasibility of equal chances. I focus on the under-analyzed issue of bad care and show how difficult it is to dismantle legacies of bad care. Their effect on even close-to-ideal social arrangements is too significant to be disregarded, yet very difficult to tackle through institutional mechanisms. A commitment to certain elements of individual ethics – as opposed to merely political institutions – is required in order to bridge the gap between ideal theories of justice and feasible practical aims. (shrink)
This paper addresses the problem of the foundation of a procedural and minimalist approach to justice in terms of fair hearing. This approach may be summarised in the ‘principle of adversary argument’ (the idea that each side in a conflict should be heard). In particular, I intend to test whether this principle may provide the bases for a conception of justice applicable to conflicts of value in politics. More precisely, the considerations I shall offer aim to answer the (...) following question: ‘How should fair hearing (and in particular fair hearing qua listening to the other side) be construed and justified in order to provide the bases for addressing value conflicts justly?’. To this end, I contend that previous efforts to argue for the principle of adversary argument, especially those offered by Stuart Hampshire, have failed to provide genuinely universal and normatively cogent foundations for it. However, I submit that such foundations are nonetheless derivable from a basic idea of procedural equality which all participants in conflicts of value could be thought to endorse. (shrink)
Whilst legitimacy is often thought to concern the processes through which coercive decisions are made in society, justice has been standardly viewed as a ‘substantial’ matter concerning the moral justification of the terms of social cooperation. Accordingly, theorization about procedures may seem appropriate for the former but not for the latter. To defend proceduralism as a relevant approach to justice, I distinguish three questions: (1) Who is entitled to exercise coercive power? (2) On what terms should the participants (...) to a scheme of cooperation interact? (3) How should the costs and benefits produced by cooperation be distributed? Legitimacy concerns (1), whereas justice applies to (2) and (3). Although the appropriateness of proceduralism is debatable in relation to (3), it seems well equipped to address the justice-related question in (2). And it does so by focusing on the inherent moral acceptability of the way in which persons are treated by the procedures through which they interact. (shrink)
Natural Justice is a bold attempt to lay the foundations for a genuine science of morals using the theory of games. Since human morality is no less a product of evolution than any other human characteristic, the book takes the view that we need to explore its origins in the food-sharing social contracts of our prehuman ancestors. It is argued that the deep structure of our current fairness norms continues to reflect the logic of these primeval social contracts, but (...) the particular fairness norm a society operates is largely a product of cultural evolution. In pursuing this point, the book proposes a naturalistic reinterpretation of John Rawls' original position that reconciles his egalitarian theory of justice with John Harsanyi's utilitarian theory by identifying the environment appropriate to each. (shrink)
I argue that promoting justice within marriage requires a cultural reconceptualiza¬tion of marriage itself as not merely a relationship of love, but as also a commitment to justice. I argue that it is insufficient to combat injustice in marriage with progressive laws and policies, even when combined with smart planning and bargaining on the part of women. Also necessary is a change in the way marriage itself is viewed. In addition to being regarded as an emotional commitment, it (...) should also be seen as a commitment to interpersonal justice. I discuss what this reconceptualization would mean in practice and address several possible objections. (shrink)
This book advances a novel theory of international justice that combines the orthodox liberal notion that the lives of individuals are what ultimately matter morally with the putatively antiliberal idea of an irreducibly collective right of self-governance. The individual and her rights are placed at center stage insofar as political states are judged legitimate if they adequately protect the human rights of their constituents and respect the rights of all others. Yet, the book argues that legitimate states have a (...) moral right to self-determination and that this right is inherently collective, irreducible to the individual rights of the persons who constitute them. Exploring the implications of these ideas, the book addresses issues pertaining to democracy, secession, international criminal law, armed intervention, political assassination, global distributive justice, and immigration. A number of the positions taken in the book run against the grain of current academic opinion: there is no human right to democracy; separatist groups can be morally entitled to secede from legitimate states; the fact that it is a matter of brute luck whether one is born in a wealthy state or a poorer one does not mean that economic inequalities across states must be minimized or even kept within certain limits; most existing states have no right against armed intervention; and it is morally permissible for a legitimate state to exclude all would-be immigrants. (shrink)
The core of this book is a novel theory of distributive justice premised on the fundamental moral equality of persons. In the light of this theory, Rakowski considers three types of problems which urgently require solutions-- the distribution of resources, property rights, and the saving of life--and provides challenging and unconventional answers. Further, he criticizes the economic analysis of law as a normative theory, and develops an alternative account of tort and property law.
In The Idea of Justice, Amartya Sen, among other things, discusses certain qualities any adequate theory of justice ought to incorporate. Two important qualities a theory of justice should account for are impartiality/objectivity and sensitivity to consequences. In order to motivate his discussion of sensitivity to consequences, Sen discusses the debate between Krishna and Arjuna from the religio-philosophical Hindu text the Bhagavad Gita. According to Sen, Arjuna represents a sensitivity to consequences while Krishna is an archetypal deontologist. (...) In this paper it will be argued that Sen's interpretation of the Gita is inaccurate. Further, a more adequate interpretation will be presented. What will be of significance is that the more adequate interpretation actually demonstrates the importance of an impartial spectator in moral reasoning. Finally, there will be a discussion of some lessons that can be taken from the Gita regarding justice generally. (shrink)
International Justice and the Third World examines the conceptual and ethical issues surrounding the idea of development. The contributors forcefully contest the view that there is no such thing as justice beween societies of unequal power, and no obligation to assist poor people in distant countries. While attentive to and explicatory of the presuppositions adhering to development models, Liberal and Marxist approaches to universal responsibilities are forwarded and these approaches' ability to manage global issues of equity are weighed.
In this paper I raise three challenges for Moellendorf's account of cosmopolitan justice. First, I argue that in a reconstructed cosmopolitan original position we would choose a 'needs-based minimum floor principle' rather than a 'global difference principle', if these are not co-extensive. Second, I argue that Moellendorf's version of the 'equality of opportunity principle' is too vulnerable to criticisms of cultural insensitivity, though I also note that there are problems with versions of the ideal that aim for a more (...) general formulation. I argue that those trying to develop an ideal of global equality of opportunity thus face a dilemma concerning how best to develop that ideal. Third, I review Moellendorf's account of justified intervention and indicate how we could make space for the importance of gaining proper authority under appropriate circumstance, without formally including it as a further necessary condition for justified interventions. (shrink)
Most cosmopolitans who are concerned about world poverty assume that for citizens of affluent societies, justice beyond national borders is a matter of their positive duty to provide aid to distant people suffering from severe poverty. This assumption is challenged by some authors, notably Tomas Pogge, who maintains that these citizens are actively involved in the incidence of poverty abroad and therefore neglect their negative duty of refraining from harming others. This paper examines the extent to which it is (...) pertinent to contend that citizens in economically advanced countries are morally liable for the impoverishment of a sizable population of the developing world. The contention in question can be interpreted in two nonexclusive ways. First, it might imply that historical injustices, including colonialism and slavery, contributed to both contemporary affluence in some parts of the world and poverty in others. Second, it could imply that the present global economic system, instituted and implemented by the governments of rich and powerful countries acting in the name of their citizens, is benefiting the citizens while harming the world’s disadvantaged. The author argues that the idea of reparation for historical injustices suffers from serious philosophical difficulties, including the non-identity problem presented by Derek Parfit, and thus fails to provide a satisfactory approach to the existing problem of poverty. This paper then examines the alleged liability of citizens in affluent countries, with a special reference to empirical observations on the policy process. The paper concludes by suggesting a twofold theory of global justice, which combines material, managerial, and moral assistances for a society lacking a competent government and proposes institutional reforms in the global order in order to achieve poverty reduction. (shrink)
This dissertation defends a “non-ideal theory” of justice: a systematic theory of how to respond justly to injustice. Chapter 1 argues that contemporary political philosophy lacks a non-ideal theory of justice, and defends a variation of John Rawls’ famous original position – the Non-Ideal Original Position – as a method with which to construct such a theory. Finally, Chapter 1 uses the Non-Ideal Original Position to argue for a Fundamental Principle of Non-Ideal Theory: a principle that requires injustices (...) to be dealt with in whichever way will best satisfy the preferences of all relevant individuals, provided those individuals are all rational, adequately informed, broadly moral, and accept the correct “ideal theory” of fully just conditions. Chapter 2 then argues for the Principle of Application – an epistemic principle that represents the Fundamental Principle’s satisfaction conditions in terms of the aims of actual or hypothetical reformist groups. Chapters 3-5 then use these two principles to argue for substantive views regarding global/international justice. Chapter 3 argues that the two principles establish a higher-order human right for all other human rights to promoted and protected in accordance with the two principles of non-ideal theory. Chapter 4 argues that the two principles defeasibly require the international community to tolerate unjust societies, provided those societies respect the most basic rights of individuals. Finally, Chapter 5 argues that the two principles imply a duty of the international community to ameliorate the most severe forms of global poverty, as well as a duty to pursue “fair trade” in international economics. (shrink)
From Schmidtz, one might expect a theory of justice, basically along libertarian lines. The book may surprise, though not disappoint, for that is not quite what one would find. Instead, the title is apt. Schmidtz says that there is a terrain of justice, the terrain of what people are due, and it has a certain kind of unity.
I shall first briefly revisit the broad idea of ‘epistemic injustice’, explaining how it can take either distributive or discriminatory form, in order to put the concepts of ‘testimonial injustice’ and ‘hermeneutical injustice’ in place. In previous work I have explored how the wrong of both kinds of epistemic injustice has both an ethical and an epistemic significance—someone is wronged in their capacity as a knower. But my present aim is to show that this wrong can also have a political (...) significance in relation to non-domination, and so to freedom. While it is only the republican conception of political freedom that presents nondomination as constitutive of freedom, I shall argue that non-domination is best understood as a thoroughly generic liberal ideal of freedom to which even negative libertarians are implicitly committed, for non-domination is negative liberty as of right—secured non-interference. Crucially on this conception, non-domination requires that the citizen can contest interferences. Pettit specifies three conditions of contestation, each of which protects against a salient risk of the would-be contester not getting a ‘proper hearing’. But I shall argue that missing from this list is anything to protect against a fourth salient threat: the threat that either kind of epistemic injustice might disable contestation by way of an unjust deflation of either credibility or intelligibility. Thus we see that both testimonial and hermeneutical injustice can render a would-be contester dominated. Epistemic justice is thereby revealed as a constitutive condition of non-domination, and thus of a central liberal political ideal of freedom. (shrink)
There is a great deal that might be said about justice in property claims. The strategy that I shall employ focuses attention upon the initial acquisition of property -- the most sensitive and most interesting area of property theory. Every theory that discusses property claims favorably assumes that there is some justification for transforming previously unowned resources into property. It is often this assumption which has seemed, to one extent or another, to be vulnerable to attack by critics of (...) particular justifications of property. Nevertheless, this assumption is frequently left undefended by property theorists, and where it is defended, the defense is often remarkably weak. That some initial claim to property be defensible is required by any theory which holds that certain present distributions may be justified, that certain transfers of property are justified, or that restitution ought to be made for previous injustice in transfer or acquisition. The initial acquisition of property, and its justification, is crucial to the remainder of property theory. (shrink)
This comprehensive study of Aristotle's Politics argues that nature, justice, and rights are central to Aristotle's political thought. Miller challenges the widely held view that the concept of rights is alien to Aristotle's thought, and presents evidence for talk of rights in Aristotle's writings. He argues further that Aristotle's theory of justice supports claims of individual rights that are political and based in nature.
Since the end of the Cold War, there has been increasing interest in the global dimensions of a host of public policy issues - issues involving war and peace, terrorism, international law, regulation of commerce, environmental protection, and disparities of wealth, income, and access to medical care. Especially pressing is the question of whether it is possible to formulate principles of justice that are valid not merely within a single society but across national borders. The thirteen essays in this (...) volume explore a range of issues that are central to contemporary discussions of global politics. Written by prominent philosophers, political scientists, economists, and legal theorists, they offer valuable contributions to current debates over the nature of justice and its implications for the development of international law and international institutions. (shrink)
Justice and Health Care: Selected Essays collects, in a systematic but non-chronological fashion, ten of Buchanan’s most significant essays on justice and health care, written over a period of almost three decades. As the Obama administration continues to struggle to implement much-needed comprehensive health care reform in the hopes of controlling rising health care costs and extending affordable health care to over 46 million uninsured Americans , there could hardly be a more appropriate time to read Buchanan’s selected (...) essays ... (shrink)
This article aims to investigate the way in which a political theory of justice should respond to the endorsement of pluralism. After offering reasons in support of the necessity for such a theory to take pluralism seriously, an argument is put forward for its characterization in minimal and procedural terms. However, taking issue with the straightforward relationship of implication identified by a number of scholars between pluralism and procedural justice, this article contends that a direct relation can only (...) be established between pluralism and the need to define a minimal theory of justice, i.e. a theory that assumes as little as possible in terms of values and views of the world. Its procedural formulation is seen, instead, as a consequence of the limited predictive power of theory facing the heterogeneous situations with which it is expected to deal. (shrink)
Recent literature on the relationship between knowledge and justice has tended to focus exclusively on the social and ethical dimensions of this relationship (e.g. social injustices related to knowledge and power, etc.). For the purposes of this article, I am interested in examining the virtue of justice and its effects on the cognitive faculties of its possessor (and, correspondingly, the effects of the vice of injustice). Drawing upon Thomas Aquinas’s account of the virtue of justice, I argue (...) that in certain cases justice can be a criterion of epistemic evaluation and that it deserves more attention than it has been given among virtue epistemologists. More precisely, the virtue of justice may become a criterion of epistemic evaluation in cases when a belief is formed on the basis of testimony. It would seem that there are cases when A’s assent to proposition p is something that is owed to B on the basis of B’s testimony; or there may be instances when A is culpable for declining to let B’s testimony have any effect on A’s belief. I briefly sketch four distinct scenarios in which this bears out. (shrink)
In his celebrated work, A Theory of Justice (1971), John Rawls argues that, from behind the veil of ignorance, parties in the original position will employ the maximin decision rule to reason to his two principles of justice. In this journal, Olatunji Oyeshile offers a brief and concise outline of some of the historical criticisms of that argument. Oyeshile offers two important criticisms of Rawls' argument. Both, however, are somewhat misplaced, as I shall show. First, he claims that (...) decision theory offers parties in the original position other decision procedures. In fact, none of the alternatives are suitable, given the situation. And second, parties in the original position would first guarantee some minimum of libertarian goods, and then seek additional profits. This objection demonstrates a misunderstanding of the place of the maximin decision rule, as I shall show. -/- I believe that both criticisms stem from a close and careful reading of Buchanan's essay on Rawls. Unfortunately, Buchanan himself seemed to have misunderstood Rawls' original arguments. I rely on problems in Buchanan's original work to defend Rawls' theory against Oyeshile's criticisms. (shrink)
Many philosophers have criticized John Rawls’s Law of Peoples. However, often these criticisms take it for granted that the moral conclusions drawn in A Theory of Justice are superior to those in the former book. In my view, however, Rawls comes to many of his “conclusions” without too many actual inferences. More precisely, my argument here is that if one takes Rawls’s premises and the assumptions made about the original position(s) seriously and does in fact think them through to (...) their logical conclusions, both A Theory of Justice and The Law of Peoples have abysmally counterintuitive and immoral implications. These implications comprise, among other things, the justifiability of slavery, the denial of human rights and the permissibility of genocide. (shrink)
Some Romanian feminist scholars argue that welfare policies of post-communist states are deeply unjust to women and preclude them from reaching economic autonomy. The upshot of this argument is that liberal economic policy would advance feminist goals better than the welfare state. How should we read this dissonance between Western and some Eastern feminist scholarship concerning distributive justice? I identify the problem of dependency at the core of a possible debate about feminism and welfare. Worries about how decades of (...) communism have shaped citizenry feed feminists' suspicion of the welfare state and fears of paternalist policies. I criticize the arguments in favour of neoliberal policies and I suggest a crucial distinction between legitimate, universal forms of human dependency and dependencies that result from particular social arrangements. (shrink)
The Pigou-Dalton (PD) principle recommends a non-leaky, non-rank-switching transfer of goods from someone with more goods to someone with less. This Article defends the PD principle as an aspect of distributive justice—enabling the comparison of two distributions, neither completely equal, as more or less just. It shows how the PD principle flows from a particular view, adumbrated by Thomas Nagel, about the grounding of distributive justice in individuals’ “claims.” And it criticizes two competing frameworks for thinking about (...) class='Hi'>justice that less clearly support the principle: the veil-of-ignorance framework, and Larry Temkin’s proposal that fairer distributions are those concerning which individuals have fewer “complaints.” -/- The Article also clarifies the relation between the PD principle and prioritarianism. Prioritarians will surely endorse the PD principle (with the “good” individual well-being), but they are also committed to a distinct axiom of separability: the moral value of someone’s well-being change does not depend upon her position relative to others. The PD principle neither implies separability, nor is implied by it. Although prioritarianism is very plausible, the case for the PD principle is yet more compelling than for the combination of that principle with separability. In discussing prioritarianism, we should differentiate between these two, logically independent aspects of the view. -/- . (shrink)
In this paper, we present an argument strengthening the view of Norman Daniels, Bruce Kennedy and Ichiro Kawachi that justice is good for one's health. We argue that the pathways through which social factors produce inequalities in sleep more strongly imply a unidirectional and non-voluntary causality than with most other public health issues. Specifically, we argue against the 'voluntarism objection' – an objection that suggests that adverse public health outcomes can be traced back to the free and voluntary choices (...) of individual actors. Our argument proceeds along two lines: an empirical line and a conceptual line. We first show that much of the empirical research on sleep supports the view that those with fewer opportunities are those who have poorer sleep habits. We then argue that sleep-related decisions are not of the same nature as most other lifestyle choices, and therefore are not as easily susceptible to the voluntarism objection. (shrink)
While the lives of millions of people are overshadowed by poverty and destitution, a relatively small subset of the world's population enjoys an unprecedented level of wealth. No doubt the world's rich have duties to address the plight of the global poor. But should we think of these as duties of egalitarian justice much like those applying domestically, or as weaker duties of humanitarian assistance? In this book, Laura Valentini offers an in-depth critique of the two most prominent answers (...) to this question, cosmopolitanism and statism, and develops a novel normative framework for addressing it. Central to this framework is the idea that, unlike duties of assistance - which bind us to help the needy - duties of justice place constraints on the ways we may legitimately coerce one another. Since coercion exists domestically as well as internationally, duties of justice apply to both realms. The forms of coercion characterizing these two realms, however, differ, and so the content of duties of justice varies across them. Valentini concludes that given the nature of existing international coercion, global justice requires more than statist assistance, yet less than full cosmopolitan equality. (shrink)