Chapter Twenty-Three - Welfarism, Individual Rights, and Procedural Fairness
In: Handbook of Social Choice and Welfare
Ever since Sen crystallized the logical conflict between the welfaristic value of the Pareto principle and the nonwelfaristic value of individual libertarian rights into what he christened the impossibility of a Paretian liberal, there have been many attempts in social choice theory to generalize, or to repudiate, the conflict between welfare and rights. This chapter focuses on this logical conflict and tries to find a way of balancing these two important values in human well-being. We will identify three issues in this line of research, viz., the formal articulation of rights, the social realization of rights, and the initial conferment of rights. We will also examine the sustainability of Sen's concept of individual rights and examine the game form articulation of individual rights as a viable alternative to Sen's proposed concept.
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