Responsibility and Distributive Justice: An Introduction

In Carl Knight & Zofia Stemplowska (eds.), Responsibility and distributive justice. Oxford University Press UK (2011)
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Abstract

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.

Author's Profile

Carl Knight
University of Glasgow

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