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Ética y Justicia. Reflexiones a partir de The Idea of Justice de Amartya Sen
[Ethics and justice. Reflections on The Idea of ​​Justice by Amartya Sen]

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  • Mejía Cubillos, Javier

Abstract

This paper carries out a brief analysis of Amartya Sen’s thinking on Justice, based on Part IV of his book The Idea of Justice. Besides of describing Sen’s thoughts on the subject, the paper aims to contextualize it in the evolution of Sen’s work and in the general discussion on Justice in economic theory, reconsidering his identity as a non utilitarian philosopher and reevaluating its importance in the history of economic thought. This work is important because it contributes to a better understanding of the most recent ideas of one of the most influential thinkers in moral discussion. The theory of Justice proposed by Sen has clear pragmatic features and does not pretend to determine an ideal set of conditions under which one can speak of absolute justice. In his theory, Justice does not require the existence of particular institutions, the subsistence of identical preferences among the members of society or the development of specific behaviors. The argumentative axis of his theory is the concept of public reasoning, whereby society would have to determine what Justice is about. Thus, Sen analyzes the main elements that would affect public reasoning in a society, including Democracy, as the ideal system for social dialogue, and Liberty, as a key factor of human welfare.

Suggested Citation

  • Mejía Cubillos, Javier, 2012. "Ética y Justicia. Reflexiones a partir de The Idea of Justice de Amartya Sen
    [Ethics and justice. Reflections on The Idea of ​​Justice by Amartya Sen]
    ," MPRA Paper 37458, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:37458
    as

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    File URL: https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/37458/1/MPRA_paper_37458.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Faravelli, Marco, 2007. "How context matters: A survey based experiment on distributive justice," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(7-8), pages 1399-1422, August.
    2. Eriksson, Ralf, 2005. "On the ethics of environmental economics as seen from textbooks," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(4), pages 421-435, March.
    3. Güth, Werner & Kliemt, Hartmut, 2010. "What ethics can learn from experimental economics -- If anything," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 302-310, September.
    4. Sen, Amartya, 1997. "On Economic Inequality," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198292975.
    5. Arrow, Kenneth & Bolin, Bert & Costanza, Robert & Dasgupta, Partha & Folke, Carl & Holling, C.S. & Jansson, Bengt-Owe & Levin, Simon & Mäler, Karl-Göran & Perrings, Charles & Pimentel, David, 1996. "Economic growth, carrying capacity, and the environment," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 1(01), pages 104-110, February.
    6. Khan, Haider, 2008. "Friedman’s Methodology: A Puzzle and A Proposal for Generating Useful Debates through Causal Comparisons (with a postscript on positive vs. normative theories)," MPRA Paper 7458, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised Mar 2008.
    7. Sen, Amartya Kumar, 1970. "The Impossibility of a Paretian Liberal," Scholarly Articles 3612779, Harvard University Department of Economics.
    8. Sen, Amartya, 1970. "The Impossibility of a Paretian Liberal," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 78(1), pages 152-157, Jan.-Feb..
    9. Azqueta, Diego & Delacamara, Gonzalo, 2006. "Ethics, economics and environmental management," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(4), pages 524-533, April.
    10. Maria Teresa Lopera Chaves & Faber Cuervo, 1997. "John Suart Mill, John Rawls y Amartya Sen, los tres nombres de la equidad," Lecturas de Economía, Universidad de Antioquia, Departamento de Economía, issue 46, pages 95-126, Enero Jun.
    11. Holler, Manfred J. & Leroch, Martin, 2010. "Efficiency and justice revisited," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 311-319, September.
    12. Kenneth J. Arrow, 1950. "A Difficulty in the Concept of Social Welfare," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 58, pages 328-328.
    13. Alvey, James E., 2005. "Overcoming Positivism In Economics: Amartya Sen'S Project Of Infusing Ethics Into Economics," Discussion Papers 23702, Massey University, Department of Applied and International Economics.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Amartya Sen; Ethics; Justice; Utilitarianism; Consequentialism;

    JEL classification:

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

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