Equal Standing in the Global Community

The Monist 94 (4):593-614 (2011)
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What bearing does living in an increasingly globalized world have upon the moral assessment of global inequality? This paper defends an account of global egalitarianism that differs from standard accounts with respect to both the content of and the justification for the imperative to reduce global inequality. According to standard accounts of global egalitarianism, the global order unjustly allows a person’s relative life prospects to track the morally arbitrary trait of where she happens to be born. After raising some worries with these accounts, the author offers an alternative account of global egalitarianism, “social egalitarianism,” which locates the wrongfulness of global inequalities in their effects on social and political interaction rather than in the unfairness of their source. On this view, global inequalities wrongfully exclude the worse-off from partaking in the benefits of globalization. Consequently, social egalitarianism aims for the elimination of only those inequalities that impede such participation.

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Rekha Nath
University of Alabama


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