PHIL 102 Lecture Notes - If And Only If, Justice As Fairness

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Published on 12 Apr 2013
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1. Justice
2. the original position
3. utilitarianism
4. two principles of justice
5. argument?
difference between moral theory and practical theory
-ethics is concerned with what makes an act right or wrong
-ethics is about individual acts
-but political philosophers are concerned with social institutions
-people collectively acting
-eg. justice
-what makes a basic social structure just?
-a basic social structure is just iff
-Rawls thinks of his approach as a version of an approach that goes back to the 17th
century
!-social contract theory
-you have agents
!-they’re adequately rational
!-equal; they can all make proposals for society and provide arguments
!-operating under a veil of ignorance
!!-you don’t know your social standing
!!-natural endowment; are you smart? charming? clumsy?
!!-fortune/income
!!-physical conditions
!!-gender, religion, race, ethnicity, etc
!!-development; technological age vs. cave dwellers
-we know...
-that others are rational
-general social and psychological facts; how people will fee if betrayed
-moderate scarcity; everyone can have enough, but no one can have everything they
want
one way to define a just society:
-a society is just iff its basic social structures comply with principles adopted in the
original position
!-this is rationally binding
-he is a kantian, and is against the utilitarianism view
-utilitarianism:
-a just social organization maximizes total happiness in the population
his book....
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Document Summary

Justice: the original position, utilitarianism, two principles of justice, argument? difference between moral theory and practical theory. Ethics is concerned with what makes an act right or wrong. But political philosophers are concerned with social institutions. Rawls thinks of his approach as a version of an approach that goes back to the 17th century. General social and psychological facts; how people will fee if betrayed. Moderate scarcity; everyone can have enough, but no one can have everything they want one way to de ne a just society: A society is just iff its basic social structures comply with principles adopted in the original position. He is a kantian, and is against the utilitarianism view. A just social organization maximizes total happiness in the population his book Equal; they can all make proposals for society and provide arguments. P1: each person is to have equal right to the most extensive basic liberties compatible with similar liberties for all (p. 14)

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