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Western University
Philosophy 2810F/G
Jennifer Epp

JULY 11 W1L2 GROUP RIGHTS THESIS • there are two theories of group rights - collective and corporate • these theories accord moral status and freedoms to individuals differently, in these specific ways • each theory raises different worries about group rights WHAT ARE GROUP RIGHTS • Grs are identified by the folder and not the content • they are: rights that are held by a group qua group • they are not: individual rights held by many different people, simply counted together • shared rights do not equal group rights. shared rights are not the same thing as group rights SOURCES OF CONFUSION rights that relate to a characteristic that individuals share with others - we all share a • right to be in this class rights can be associated with group membership or activity without being group rights, • as "who is the holder of the right" • relation of group and individual rights: - individual moral rights can justify group politi- cal rights (legislative rep) - group moral rights can justify individual political rights (fishing rights) • the boundary between group and individual rights is fuzzy, moral rather than ontologi- cal reasons may decide COLLECTIVE THEORIES OF GR • based on interest theories of rights • rights protect interests of holders • holders are groups of people who well-being is of ultimate value or are artificial people • the interest or well being at stake must be important enough to generate a duty for ad- dressees (homework vs bodily integrity • rights ground duties INTERESTS ARE THE BASIS OF GROUP RIGHTS • interest must be sufficient to generate duties(shared interests do not necessarily gen- erate group rights) • interest must be in a public good (non rivalrous, non-excludable) • interests are of individuals as group members • the interest of any one group member is not enough to generate the right • individual interests combine to generate a group right claim • interests might be ones an individual can hold alone • interests might be ones an individual can only hold with the right kind of other people • BUT individuals interests ground group rights - only individual interests have moral sig- nificance • the group itself has no moral standing apart from the individuals interest COLLECTIVE THEORIES OF GROUP RIGHTS • any set of individuals that has a common interest may possess a right qua group - the interest can constitute a group • the relevant common interest can be a shared interest in one matter only • no more is required for them to bear a group right than that their interests, taken col- lectively, are sufficiently weight (numbers matter)
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