The belief in innate talent and its implications for distributive justice

Educational Philosophy and Theory 53 (8):819-832 (2021)
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Abstract

Although the commonly accepted view is that there are such things as natural talents, more than 20 years of research suggests the opposite. What passes for talented is attributable to a combination of social and environmental factors. If the current research on this topic holds true, then there are implications not only for various theories of distributive justice, but there are also serious implication for real world distributions. In this article I will argue that talent is not innate and that our belief in its innateness has serious theoretical and practical implications for distributive justice. Many of these implications can be seen in the ways resources and opportunities are distributed; particularly in the way they affect distributions to children.

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Mark Vopat
Youngstown State University

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