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Sovereign Virtue: The Theory and Practice of Equality
Equality is the endangered species of political ideals. Even left-of-center politicians reject equality as an ideal: government must combat poverty, they say, but need not strive that its citizens be equal in any dimension. In his new book Ronald Dworkin insists, to the contrary, that equality is the indispensable virtue of democratic sovereignty. A legitimate government m ...more
Paperback, 528 pages
Published March 1st 2002 by Harvard University Press
(first published 2000)
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Dworkin attempts to tackle two fairly large questions in this book: is equality an important value, and is it possible? The first kind of gets glanced over, but for the first hundred pages he makes a pretty concerted effort on the second question. Despite disagreeing with him, he earned a lot of respect from me in that first quarter of the book, not ignoring the existence of challenges and coming up with a novel and interesting idea of creating equality on a pseudo-Crusoe economy by auctioning t ...more
Ronald Dworkin, QC, FBA was an American philosopher of law. He was a Jeremy Bentham Professor of Law and Philosophy at University College London, Frank Henry Sommer Professor of Law at New York University, and has taught previously at Yale Law School and the University of Oxford. An influential contributor to both philosophy of law and political philosophy, Dworkin received the 2007 Holberg Intern ...moreMore about Ronald Dworkin...
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“The auction proposes what the envy test in fact assumes, that the true measure of the social resources devoted to the life of one person is fixed by asking how important, in fact, that resource is for others. [The auction] insists that the cost, measured in that way, figures in each person's sense of what is rightly his and in each person's judgment of what life he should lead, given that command of justice.”More quotes…