Philosophical Inquiry 43 (3-4):77-86 (2019)

In this paper, I introduce a novel view of fairness: I explain fair sport competition through the notion of successful competition. I begin by analysing successful competition. I propose that competitions can be successful, both internally and externally. Internally successful competition is connected to the internal purpose of competition and has two senses: narrow and wide. Competition was internally successful in the narrow sense if three criteria of ‘betterness’ – official result, ideally adjudicated result, and display of athletic skills – were congruous in that competition. Competition was internally successful in the wide sense if the three aforementioned criteria of betterness were congruous and the competition also embodied ‘sweet tension of uncertainty of outcome’. Externally successful competition is connected to the external purposes of competition. Financial gain is an example of an external purpose. I argue that competition was fair if it was internally successful in the narrow sense, that is, if the three criteria of betterness were congruous in the competition.
Keywords Ancient Philosophy  Contemporary Philosophy
Categories No categories specified
(categorize this paper)
ISBN(s) 1105-235X
DOI 10.5840/philinquiry2019433/421
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 64,046
External links

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.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Categories of Competition.Steven Skultety - 2011 - Sport, Ethics and Philosophy 5 (4):433 - 446.
Competition.John Wilson - 1989 - Journal of Moral Education 18 (1):26-31.
About the Ethics of Business Competition.Matti Estola - 1998 - Electronic Journal of Business Ethics and Organization Studies 3 (1).
Intensity of Competition and the Choice Between Product and Process Innovation.Giacomo Bonanno - 1998 - International Journal of Industrial Organization 16 (4):495-510.
Competition: A Critical History of a Concept.Nicholas Gane - forthcoming - Theory, Culture and Society:026327641987824.


Added to PP index

Total views
11 ( #830,616 of 2,454,442 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
5 ( #143,418 of 2,454,442 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes