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"Positional Views" as the Cornerstone of Sen's Idea of Justice

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  • Antoinette Baujard

    () (GATE Lyon Saint-Étienne - Groupe d'analyse et de théorie économique - ENS Lyon - École normale supérieure - Lyon - UL2 - Université Lumière - Lyon 2 - UCBL - Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1 - Université de Lyon - UJM - Université Jean Monnet [Saint-Étienne] - Université de Lyon - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)

  • 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)

Abstract

Our paper offers a novel reading of Sen's idea of justice, beyond the standard prisms imposed by theories of justice-resting on external normative criteria-and formal welfarism-involving the definition of individual welfare and its aggregation. Instead we take seriously Sen's emphasis on personal agency and focus on his original contribution to the issue of objectivity. Firstly, we demonstrate that Sen's idea of justice, with at its core "positional views", is more respectful of persons' agency than would be a theory based on individual preference or capability. Secondly, we argue that Sen's conception of objectivity considers that both information and sentiments are relative to a position. Such an alternative approach to subjectivity allows the formation of more impartial views through collective deliberation and a better consideration of justice by agents themselves.

Suggested Citation

  • Antoinette Baujard & Muriel Gilardone, 2019. ""Positional Views" as the Cornerstone of Sen's Idea of Justice," Working Papers halshs-02190946, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:wpaper:halshs-02190946
    Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-02190946
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Muriel Gilardone, 2016. "Amartya Sen : un allié pour l’économie de la personne contre la métrique des capabilités. Deux arguments pour une lecture non fonctionnelle de la liberté chez Sen," Economics Working Paper Archive (University of Rennes 1 & University of Caen) 2016-11, Center for Research in Economics and Management (CREM), University of Rennes 1, University of Caen and CNRS.
    2. Antoinette Baujard & Muriel Gilardone, 2017. "Sen is not a capability theorist," Journal of Economic Methodology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 24(1), pages 1-19, January.
    3. Muriel Gilardone, 2015. "Rawls's influence and counter-influence on Sen: Post-welfarism and impartiality," The European Journal of the History of Economic Thought, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 22(2), pages 198-235, April.
    4. Muriel Gilardone, 2009. "Inégalités De Genre Et Approche Par Les Capabilités : Quelle Mise En Dialogue Chez Sen ?," Revue Tiers-Monde, Armand Colin, vol. 0(2), pages 357-371.
    5. Ragip Ege & Herrade Igersheim & Charlotte Le Chapelain, 2016. "Transcendental vs. comparative approaches to justice: a reappraisal of Sen's dichotomy," The European Journal of the History of Economic Thought, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 23(4), pages 521-543, August.
    6. Fabienne Peter, 2012. "Sen's Idea of Justice and the locus of normative reasoning," Journal of Economic Methodology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(2), pages 165-167, June.
    7. Laurie Bréban & Muriel Gilardone, 2019. "A missing touch of Adam Smith in Amartya Sen’s account of Public Reasoning: the Man Within for the Man Without," Economics Working Paper from Condorcet Center for political Economy at CREM-CNRS 2019-01-ccr, Condorcet Center for political Economy.
    8. Sen, Amartya, 2006. "Reason, Freedom and Well-being," Utilitas, Cambridge University Press, vol. 18(1), pages 80-96, March.
    9. John B. Davis, 2012. "The idea of public reasoning," Journal of Economic Methodology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(2), pages 169-172, June.
    10. Ragip Ege & Herrade Igersheim & Charlotte Le Chapelain, 2012. "Par-delà le transcendantal et le comparatif. Deux arguments," Revue française d'économie, Presses de Sciences-Po, vol. 0(4), pages 185-212.
    11. Muriel Gilardone, 2018. "The influence of Sen’s applied economics on his “social choice” approach to justice: agency at the core of public action to remove injustice," Economics Working Paper from Condorcet Center for political Economy at CREM-CNRS 2018-01-ccr, Condorcet Center for political Economy.
    12. David A. Crocker, 2007. "Deliberative Participation in Local Development," Journal of Human Development and Capabilities, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 8(3), pages 431-455.
    13. Fabienne Peter, 2007. "Democratic legitimacy and proceduralist social epistemology," Politics, Philosophy & Economics, , vol. 6(3), pages 329-353, October.
    14. Ingrid Robeyns, 2012. "Are transcendental theories of justice redundant?," Journal of Economic Methodology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(2), pages 159-163, June.
    15. Amartya Sen, 2012. "A reply to Robeyns, Peter and Davis," Journal of Economic Methodology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(2), pages 173-176, June.
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    Keywords

    Individual preferences; positional objectivity; sentiments; public reasoning; agency; justice;

    JEL classification:

    • A13 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Relation of Economics to Social Values
    • B31 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought: Individuals - - - Individuals
    • B41 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Economic Methodology - - - Economic Methodology
    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being

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