Downward mobility and Rawlsian justice

Philosophical Studies 175 (2):277-300 (2017)
Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
Abstract
Technological and societal changes have made downward social and economic mobility a pressing issue in real-world politics. This article argues that a Rawlsian society would not provide any special protection against downward mobility, and would act rightly in declining to provide such protection. Special treatment for the downwardly mobile can be grounded neither in Rawls’s core principles—the basic liberties, fair equality of opportunity, and the difference principle—nor in other aspects of Rawls’s theory. Instead, a Rawlsian society is willing to sacrifice particular individuals’ ambitions and plans for the achievement of justice, and offers those who lose out from justified change no special solicitude over and above the general solicitude extended to all. Rather than guaranteeing the maintenance of any particular individual or group’s economic position, it provides all of its members—the upwardly mobile, the downwardly mobile, and the immobile—a form of security that is at once more generous and more limited: that they will receive the liberties, opportunities, and resources promised by the principles of justice.
Reprint years
2017, 2018
ISBN(s)
PhilPapers/Archive ID
PERDMA-3
Revision history
Archival date: 2017-03-11
View upload history
References found in this work BETA
Collected Papers. [REVIEW]Hill, Thomas E. & Rawls, John

View all 19 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Added to PP index
2017-03-11

Total views
219 ( #15,642 of 43,016 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
41 ( #16,753 of 43,016 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks to external links.