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John Rawls

by: Thomas nelson

John Rawls PHL 2008

Thomas nelson

GPA 3.5

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About this Document

These notes cover the week of March 27, 2016.
Social Ethics
Thaddeus M. Ostrowski
Class Notes
Social Ethics
25 ?




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This 1 page Class Notes was uploaded by Thomas nelson on Saturday April 2, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to PHL 2008 at High Point University taught by Thaddeus M. Ostrowski in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 18 views. For similar materials see Social Ethics in PHIL-Philosophy at High Point University.

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Date Created: 04/02/16
Thomas Nelson  John Rawls (1921­2002) published “A Theory of Justice” in 1971 o Made ethics and the meaning of justice the primary focus of philosophical  discussion o He rejected Utilitarian and Libertarian accounts of justice, and his ideas have been prominent in all decisions of justice since  His theory emphasizes “justice as fairness”  Criticism of Utilitarianism o Permits gross inequalities o Individual rights can’t be treated for overall welfare of society (Libertarianism  agrees)  Criticism of Libertarianism o Are initial acquisitions accidents of birth? Results of “natural lottery” (unmerited  or earned)? o Did you get to choose who you are? Do you deserve the circumstances of your  birth or the talents and abilities with which you were endowed? Did you “earn”  them in any way?  Malcolm Gladwell’s notion of “Outliers” o Hockey example: 2/3 of Canada’s pro hockey players were born in January and  February  Cutoff date in their hockey leagues → They are older and bigger in each  league, generally  Sometimes consent is not sufficient to make a contract fair (old lady’s expensive toilet)  Sometimes consent is not necessary (Hume’s house, squeegee and car, roadside car  repair, life­saving surgery while unconscious)  Contracts derive from their moral force from o Autonomy (consent) o Reciprocity (mutual benefit)


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