Nonideal Justice as Nonideal Fairness

Journal of the American Philosophical Association 5 (2):208-228 (2019)
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This article argues that diverse theorists have reasons to theorize about fairness in nonideal conditions, including theorists who reject fairness in ideal theory. It then develops a new all-purpose model of ‘nonideal fairness.’ §1 argues that fairness is central to nonideal theory across diverse ideological and methodological frameworks. §2 then argues that ‘nonideal fairness’ is best modeled by a nonideal original position adaptable to different nonideal conditions and background normative frameworks (including anti-Rawlsian ones). §3 then argues that the parties to the model have grounds to seek a variety of remedial social, legal, cultural, and economic ‘nonideal primary goods’ for combating injustice, as well as grounds to distribute these goods in an equitable and inclusive manner. Finally, I illustrate how the model indexes the nonideal primary goods it justifies to different nonideal contexts and background normative frameworks, illustrating why diverse theorists should find the model and its output principles attractive.

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Marcus Arvan
University of Tampa

Citations of this work

(When) Are Authors Culpable for Causing Harm?Marcus Arvan - 2023 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 20 (1-2):47-78.
Educational Justice and School Boosting.Marcus Arvan - forthcoming - Social Theory and Practice.

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References found in this work

Anarchy, State, and Utopia.Robert Nozick - 1974 - New York: Basic Books.
Groundwork for the metaphysics of morals.Immanuel Kant - 1785 - New York: Oxford University Press. Edited by Thomas E. Hill & Arnulf Zweig.
Justice as fairness: a restatement.John Rawls (ed.) - 2001 - Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.
The idea of justice.Amartya Kumar Sen - 2009 - Cambridge, Mass.: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.

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