The political egalitarian's dilemma

Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 10 (4):373 - 387 (2007)
Abstract
Political egalitarianism is at the core of most normative conceptions of democratic legitimacy. It finds its minimal expression in the “one person one vote” formula. In the literature on deliberative democracy, political equality is typically interpreted in a more demanding sense, but different interpretations of what political equality requires can be identified. In this paper I shall argue that the attempt to specify political equality in deliberative democracy is affected by a dilemma. I shall illustrate the political egalitarian’s dilemma by a hypothetical choice between two informational bases for political equality: Rawlsian primary goods and Amartya Sen’s capability approach. The political egalitarian’s dilemma reveals a clash between the requirement of ensuring equal possibilities to participate in the democratic process and the requirement of subjecting substantive judgments to deliberative evaluation. As such, the dilemma is a variant of the procedure vs. substance dilemma that is well-known in democratic theory. While it has sometimes been argued that deliberative democracy solves the tension between procedure and substance, the political egalitarian’s dilemma shows that this tension continues within deliberative democracy.
Keywords egalitarianism  legitimacy  deliberative democracy  Rawlsian primary goods  Amartya Sen’s capability approach
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/s10677-006-9057-z
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history
Request removal from index
Download options
Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 28,829
Through your library
References found in this work BETA
On Liberty and Other Essays.John Stuart Mill - 2008 - Oxford University Press.
Democracy and Disagreement.Amy Gutmann - 1996 - Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.
Why Deliberative Democracy?Amy Gutmann & Dennis Thompson - 2004 - Princeton University Press.
Political Liberalism.J. Rawls - 1995 - Tijdschrift Voor Filosofie 57 (3):596-598.
Commodities and Capabilities.Amartya Sen - 1999 - Oxford University Press India.

View all 16 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Democracy and Equality.Steven Wall - 2007 - Philosophical Quarterly 57 (228):416–438.
Equal Consideration of All – an Aporetic Project?Matthias Fritsch - 2006 - Philosophy and Social Criticism 32 (3):299-323.
The Coherence of Rawls's Plea for Democratic Equality.Percy B. Lehning - 1998 - Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy 1 (4):1-41.
Democratic Legitimacy Without Collective Rationality.Fabienne Peter - 2009 - In Boudewijn Paul de Bruin & Christopher F. Zurn (eds.), New Waves in Political Philosophy. Palgrave-Macmillan.

Monthly downloads

Added to index

2009-01-28

Total downloads

53 ( #100,012 of 2,178,178 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

5 ( #54,693 of 2,178,178 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature


Discussion
Order:
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.

Other forums