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Amartya K. Sen: The idea of justice. The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 2009, 468 pp


  • Muriel Gilardone

    () (CREM - Centre de recherche en économie et management - UNICAEN - Université de Caen Normandie - NU - Normandie Université - UR1 - Université de Rennes 1 - UNIV-RENNES - Université de Rennes - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)


Amartya Sen's readers were expecting the second volume of a series of two devoted to rationality, freedom and justice. Surprisingly The Idea of Justice is not exactly the book announced by Sen (2002); it offers a new perspective of Sen's enterprise. Calling economic orthodoxy into question is not enough; Sen envisages calling philosophical orthodoxy into question too. This review essay will focus on four salient points of the book: the partition of the different approaches of justice in two traditions; the concept of "positional objectivity" to serve impartiality; the will to reconcile reason and sentiments; the capability approach as important but not exclusive.

Suggested Citation

  • Muriel Gilardone, 2010. "Amartya K. Sen: The idea of justice. The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 2009, 468 pp," Post-Print halshs-00496277, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:journl:halshs-00496277
    DOI: 10.1007/s00355-010-0456-7
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