To demonstrate this opinion, he images a just man and an unjust man, each with a ring of invisibility. Neither would restrain himself if he could steal, have intercourse with anyone, or kill anyone without penalty — as a god among mortals with the power do what he pleased. Now, to judge each kind of person, Glaucon proposes, we need to contrast the most just with the most unjust person, without regard to consequences. The unjust person will appear just, while doing injustice. The just person is stripped of all good things to see if he practices justice for its own sake.
Does justice hold up against a bad reputation and horrific consequences? Let the just person appear unjust while being just until death. Socrates remarks that Glaucon has polished the two types of men like two statues ready for judgment. But Glaucon adds dramatic consequences to being but not appearing just: the just man will be whipped, racked, bound, have his eyes gouged out, and after suffering every form of evil, will finally know that appearing to be just is better than actually being just.
The unjust man will live by the truth of things, benefiting friends and harming enemies. His rustic comedy ends by saying that even the gods support the unjust life. Is Glaucon correct? So even if it were possible to construct a forward-looking rationale for having rules that closely tracked desert or entitlement as these are normally understood, the utilitarian still cannot capture the sense of justice — why it matters that people should get what is due to then — that informs our common-sense judgements. Utilitarians might reply that their reconstruction preserves what is rationally defensible in common sense beliefs while what it discards are elements that cannot survive sustained critical reflection.
The shortcomings of utilitarianism have prompted several recent philosophers to revive the old idea of the social contract as a better way of bringing coherence to our thinking about justice. The idea here is not that people actually have entered a contract to establish justice, or that they should proceed to do so, but that we can understand justice better by asking the question: what principles to govern their institutions, practices and personal behaviour would people choose to adopt if they all had to agree on them in advance?
The contract, in other words, is hypothetical; but the search for agreement is meant to ensure that the principles chosen would, when implemented, not lead to outcomes that people could not accept. Thus whereas a utilitarian might, under some circumstances, be prepared to support slavery — if the misery of the slaves were outweighed by the heightened pleasures of the slave-owners — contractarians claims that no-one could accept a principle permitting slavery, lest they themselves were destined to be slaves when the principle was applied.
The problem that contractarians face is to show how such an agreement is possible. If we were to ask people, in the real world, what principles they would prefer to live under, they are likely to start from a position of quite radical disagreement, given their interests and their beliefs. Some might even be willing to endorse slavery, if they were fairly certain that they would not end up as slaves themselves, or if they were sado-masochists who viewed the humiliations inflicted on slaves in a positive light.
So in order to show how agreement could be achieved, contractarians have to model the contracting parties in a particular way, either by limiting what they are allowed to know about themselves or about the future, or by attributing to them certain motivations while excluding others. Since the modelling can be done differently, we have a family of contractarian theories of justice, three of whose most important members are the theories of Gauthier, Rawls and Scanlon.
Gauthier presents the social contract as a bargain between rational individuals who can gain through co-operating with one another, but who are competing over the division of the resulting surplus. He assumes that each is interested only in trying to maximise his own welfare, and he also assumes that there is a non-co-operative baseline from which the bargaining begins — so nobody would accept a solution that left her less well off than in the baseline condition. Each person can identify the outcome under which they fare best — their maximum gain — but they have no reason to expect others to accept that.
Gauthier argues that rational bargainers will converge on the principle of Minimax Relative Concession , which requires each to concede the same relative proportion of their maximum possible gain relative to the non-co-operative baseline. Thus suppose there is a feasible arrangement whereby each participant can achieve two-thirds of their maximum gain, but no arrangement under which they all do better than that, then this is the arrangement that the principle recommends.
Each person has made the same concession relative to the outcome that is best for them personally — not accepting the same absolute loss of welfare, let it be noted, but the same proportionate loss. Part III. But the larger question is whether a contract modelled in this way is an appropriate device for delivering principles of justice. This seems implausible: there may be prudential reasons to recommend a distribution that reflects the outcome that self-interested and rational bargainers would arrive at, but claims of justice need a different basis.
First, the shape of the theory has evolved from its first incarnation in Rawls through his major work A Theory of Justice Rawls and on to Rawls and Rawls His principles, which are discussed elsewhere see the entry on John Rawls , can be defended on their own merits as a theory of social justice for a modern liberal society, even if their contractual grounding proves to be unsound. Rawls presents the contracting parties as seeking to advance their own interests as they decide which principles to favour, but under two informational constraints.
This means that they have no basis on which to bargain for advantage, and have to consider themselves as generic persons who might be male or female, talented or untalented, and so forth. The problem for Rawls, however, is to show that the principles that would be selected in such an original position are in fact recognizable as principles of justice.
This, however, would bring the theory very close to utilitarianism, since the natural method of weighing primary goods is to ask how much utility having a given quantity of each is likely, on average, to bring for the claim that utilitarianism would be chosen in a Rawlsian original position, see Harsanyi Since Rawls wishes to reject utilitarianism, he has to adjust the psychology of the parties in the original position so that they reason differently.
Thus he suggests that, at least in developed societies, people have special reason to prioritise liberty over the other goods and to ensure that it is equally distributed: he argues that this is essential to safeguard their self-respect. When he turns to the distribution of income and wealth, Rawls has to show why his choosers would pick the difference principle, which considers only the position of the worst-off social group, over other principles such as maximising average income across the whole society. For example, they are said to be much more concerned to achieve the minimum level of income that the difference principle would guarantee them than to enjoy increases above that level.
In his later work, he abandons this reliance on maximin reasoning and gives greater prominence to another argument hinted at in Theory. This portrays the contracting parties as starting out from the presumption that income and wealth should be distributed equally, but then recognizing that all can benefit by permitting certain inequalities to arise.
When these inequalities are governed by the difference principle, they can be justified to everyone, including the worst off, thus creating the conditions for a more stable society. But we need then to ask why equal distribution should be treated as the benchmark, departures from which require special justification.
Although Rawls throughout presents his theory of justice as contractarian, we can now see that the terms of the contract are in part determined by prior normative principles that Rawls engineers the parties to follow. So in contrast to Gauthier, it is no longer simply a case of self-interested contractors negotiating their way to an agreement. Rawls candidly admits that the contractual situation has to be adjusted so that it yields results that match our pre-existing convictions about justice.
But then we may ask how much work the contractual apparatus is really doing see Barry , ch. Like Rawls, Scanlon is concerned to develop an alternative to utilitarianism, and he does so by developing a test that any candidate moral principle must pass: it must be such that no-one could reasonably reject it as the basis for informed, unforced general agreement see the entry on contractualism.
They are able to see what effect adopting any proposed principle would have on them personally. If that effect is unacceptable to them, they are permitted to reject it. Each person has, so to speak, a veto on any general principle for regulating conduct. Those that survive this test are defensible as principles of justice — Scanlon concedes that there might be alternative sets of such principles appropriate to different social conditions. It might seem, however, that giving each person a veto would lead straightforwardly to deadlock, since anyone might reject a principle under which he fared badly relative to some alternative.
Here the idea of reasonable rejection becomes important. It would not, Scanlon thinks, be reasonable to reject a principle under which one does badly if the alternatives all involve someone else faring worse still. But this is not the conclusion that Scanlon draws though he acknowledges that there might be special reasons to follow Rawls in requiring basic social institutions to follow the difference principle. The claims of other groups must be considered too. If a policy greatly benefits many others, while slightly worsening the position of a few, though without leaving them very badly off, it may well not be rejectable.
Scanlon also says that a person can have a reason for rejecting a principle if it treats them unfairly, say by benefitting some but not others for arbitrary reasons. This presupposes a norm of fairness that the contractarian theory does not itself attempt to explain or justify.
So it looks as though the purpose of the theory is to provide a distinctive account of moral reasoning and moral motivation but not to defend any substantive principles of distributive justice.
But we should not be too hasty to assume that what justice demands is always equality, whether of treatment or of outcome. Perhaps it does so only in a formal sense. As we saw in sect 1. But, as Aristotle among others saw, justice also involves the idea of proportional treatment, which implies recipients getting unequal amounts of whatever good is at issue Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics , Book V, ch. If A is twice as deserving or twice as needy as B , justice may require that she receives more than B does.
- The Republic?
- From distant regions flying, air and chorus?
- Far As The Curse Is Found:Poems in Six Places!
- Book Review: Understanding Health Inequalities and Justice!
- Book Review: Understanding Health Inequalities and Justice | Medical Humanities.
- 1. Justice: Mapping the Concept?
- The Beginning!
So here formal equality of treatment — the same rule applied to both — leads to an unequal outcome. Again, when justice takes the conservative form of respect for existing entitlements or legitimate expectations see para 2. So we need to ask about the circumstances in which justice requires a substantively equal distribution of advantages. One rather obvious case occurs when the members of the group within which the distribution is going to occur have no relevant distinguishing features, so there are no grounds on which some can claim greater shares of benefit than others.
Suppose a group experiences a windfall gain for which no-one can claim any credit: a pot of gold somehow appears in their midst. Then unless any member can make a justice-related claim for a larger-than-equal share — say that she has special needs that she lacks sufficient resources to meet — an equal distribution of the gold is what justice demands, since any other distribution would be arbitrary. Equality here is the default principle that applies in the absence of any special claims that can be presented as reasons of justice. Equality also acts as a default in circumstances where, although people may indeed have unequal claims to whatever good is being distributed, we have no reliable way of identifying and measuring those claims.
By sharing the good equally, we can at least ensure that every claim has been partially satisfied. Any other distribution must leave at least one person with less this of course assumes that there is no threshold amount of the drug beneath which it is ineffective; if that assumption is wrong, justice under the stated conditions might require a lottery in which the chosen ones receive threshold-size doses. If justice requires equality only by default, it might seem to apply only in a narrow range of cases.
How could egalitarian justice be made more robust? One approach involves declaring a wider range of factors irrelevant to just distribution. This captures a widespread intuition that people should not be advantaged or disadvantaged by virtue of their race or gender, but extends it more controversially to all personal features with a genetic basis, such as natural talents and inborn dispositions.
In doing so, it discounts most claims of desert, since when people are said to deserve benefits of various kinds, it is usually for performing actions or displaying qualities that depend upon innate characteristics such as strength or intelligence. In the following section, we will see how egalitarian theories of justice have tried to incorporate some desert-like elements by way of response. But otherwise justice as equality and justice as desert appear to be in conflict, and the challenge is to show what can justify equal treatment in the face of inequalities of desert.
A second approach answers this challenge by explaining why it is positively valuable to afford people equal treatment even if they do display features that might appear to justify differential treatment. A prominent advocate of this approach is Dworkin, who argues that fundamental to justice is a principle of equal concern and respect for persons, and what this means in more concrete term is that equal resources should be devoted to the life of each member of society Dworkin The reference to membership here is not redundant, because Dworkin understands egalitarian justice as a principle that must be applied within sovereign states specifically — so in the terms of 3.
The thought is that showing persons equal respect may sometimes require us to afford them equal treatment, even in the face of relevant grounds for discrimination. As noted above, justice as simple equality of treatment seems open to the objection that it fails to acknowledge the agency of the recipients, who may have acted in ways that appear to qualify them to receive more or less of whatever benefit is being distributed.
There are, however, a number of problems it has to face. By giving scope to personal responsibility, it seeks to capture what is perhaps the most attractive part of the conventional idea of desert — that people should be rewarded for making good choices and penalised for making bad ones — while filtering out the effects of having undeserved natural talents. But in reality the choices that people make are influenced by the talents and other qualities that they happen to have already.
So if we allow someone to reap advantages by, for example, devoting long hours to learning to play the piano at a high level, we must recognize that this is a choice that she would almost certainly not have made unless early experiment showed that she was musically gifted. We cannot say what she would have chosen to do in a counterfactual world in which she was tone deaf.
There seems then to be no coherent half-way house between accepting full-blooded desert and denying that people can justly claim relative advantage through the exercise of responsibility and choice see further Miller , ch. This will be true, for example, in any case in which people are competing to excel in some field, where successful choices made by A will worsen the comparative position of B , C , and D. We have seen that equality can sometimes be understood as required by justice; but it can also be valued independently.
Strength & Justice, Side: Strength (Strength & Justice #1)
Indeed there can be circumstances in which the two values collide, because what justice demands is inequality of outcome. A society of equals contrasts with one in which people belong to different ranks in a social hierarchy, and behave towards one another as their relative ranking prescribes. Different reasons can be given for objecting to social inequality, and conversely for valuing social equality see Scanlon Thus, faced with a world like the one we currently inhabit in which income differences are very large, justice theorists are likely to criticize these inequalities on grounds that they are not deserved, or arise from brute luck, etc.
Relational equality does not address issues of distribution directly, and so cannot function as a theory of justice itself, but it can provide grounds for preferring one theory of justice to its rivals — namely that implementing that particular theory is more likely to create or sustain a society of equals. We saw at the beginning of this article that justice can take a number of different forms, depending on the practical context in which it is being applied. In these circumstances, it is natural to look for an overarching framework into which the various contextually specific conceptions of justice can all be fitted.
Three such frameworks were examined: utilitarianism, contractarianism and egalitarianism. So unless we are willing to jettison many of these convictions in order to uphold one or other general framework, we will need to accept that no comprehensive theory of justice is available to us; we will have to make do with partial theories — theories about what justice requires in particular domains of human life. Rawls himself, despite the bold title of his first book A Theory of Justice , came to recognize that what he had outlined was at best a theory of social justice applied to the basic institutional structure of a modern liberal state.
Other forms of justice — familial, allocative, associational, international — with their associated principles would be applicable in their respective domains for an even more explicitly pluralist account of justice, see Walzer ; for a fuller defence of a contextual approach to justice, see Miller , esp. One way to loosen up our thinking about justice is by paying greater attention to the history of the concept.
We can learn a great deal by reading what Aristotle, or Aquinas, or Hume, has to say about the concept, but as we do so, we also see that elements we would expect to find are missing there is nothing about rights in Aristotle, for example , while others that we would not anticipate are present. This may in some part be due to the idiosyncrasies of each thinker, but more importantly it reflects differences in the form of social life in which each was embedded — its economic, legal and political structure, especially. Various attempts have been made to write histories of justice that are more than just catalogues of what individual thinkers have said: they aim to trace and explain systematic shifts in the way that justice has been interpreted for contrasting examples, see MacIntyre , Fleischacker , Johnston These should not be read as enlightenment stories in which our understanding of justice steadily improves as the centuries roll by.
We can get a better grasp of what justice means to us by seeing the various conceptions that compete for our attention as tied to aspects of our social world that did not exist in the past, and are equally liable to disappear in the future. Aristotle, General Topics: ethics consequentialism consequentialism: rule contractualism feminist philosophy, topics: perspectives on reproduction and the family justice: as a virtue justice: distributive justice: global justice: intergenerational justice: international distributive justice: retributive justice: transitional luck: justice and bad luck Rawls, John reflective equilibrium social contract: contemporary approaches to.
Justice First published Mon Jun 26, Justice: Mapping the Concept 1. Justice: Four Distinctions 2. The Scope of Justice 3. Utilitarianism and Justice 4. Contractarianism and Justice 5. Egalitarianism and Justice 6. Justice: Four Distinctions We have so far looked at four elements that are present in every use of the concept of justice.
The Scope of Justice When we raise questions about the scope of justice, we are asking about when principles of justice take effect and among whom. Utilitarianism and Justice Can justice be understood in utilitarian terms? Contractarianism and Justice The shortcomings of utilitarianism have prompted several recent philosophers to revive the old idea of the social contract as a better way of bringing coherence to our thinking about justice.
She eventually relinquishes the power and gets powers from the Olympians, but she is tempted by her old power. Isis robs Marvel of his powers by saying Shazam from a spell book to send lightning at him, and banishes a powerless Billy Batson back to Fawcett City, where he contacts the Justice Society for help. Billy is abducted by the now evil Mary Marvel, who shares her powers with him and turns him into an evil teenage Captain Marvel. However, Adam switches sides when Isis sets into action her plan to kill off humanity and destroy modern civilization.
A Reply to Kelsen's Critique of Aristotle's Concept of Justice
With the help of the Justice Society's Flash and the spirit of C. C Batson Mary and Billy's father , the dead wizard Shazam's soul is retrieved from an underworld realm known as the Rock of Finality, and Adam gives up his powers to resurrect him from the statue he is imprisoned in. Shazam promptly takes his powers back from the other three Black Marvels, turns Adam and Isis into stone statues, and banishes Billy and Mary from the Rock of Eternity upon stating that they have failed him.
He threatens to come after Freddy Freeman, as his powers come directly from the Gods. They are later seen walking the streets of Fawcett City while homeless and pondering the fate of their father's spirit. During Blackest Night, they are living in an apartment, and comment on how scary it is not to have their powers anymore. Freddy is seen with Billy and Mary in their apartment.
They reminisce about the past and how Mary now feels useless without her powers. Mary is later seen assaulting Freddy, Blaze appears. The scene cuts to a homeless shelter. Blaze is seen talking to Mary. She tells Mary that if she kills Freddy, she will restore Billy and Mary's powers. It cuts back. Blaze is seen breaking her promise to Mary. Seconds later the word 'Shazam' is heard, sending Blaze rocketing through the wall. It turns out Freddy was in on it too, only pretending to get killed.
Blaze and Freddy fight in the streets. Blaze punches Freddy with a ring containing liquid from the river of the Styx, which is toxic to everyone besides the residents of Hell. Billy is seen telling Mary to distract Blaze while he helps Freddy wash off the toxic water. Freddy then follows by "killing" Blaze and sending her back to Hell. Later on, Freddy tells Billy and Mary that no matter what, he will find a way to restore their powers!
The Flash's changes to reality created a new world where Billy's life had significantly changed. In this new world, his superhero identity was called Shazam, not Captain Marvel. Billy also had undergone a personality change: while he was still essentially a good boy, he was distrustful of people and wanted to become an adult as fast as possible so that he could take care of himself and not worry about anybody else. Billy lived in an orphanage in Philadelphia and was interviewed by a couple of parents, the Vasquezes, so that he could be adopted and attend to school.
He behaved properly towards the Vasquezes, who decided to adopt him. As soon as they left, however, Billy expressed indifference towards them. Later, Billy sees an emergency in the city and transforms into Shazam. After being adopted he moves to the Vasquezes home where he meets the rest of their family, who are also adopted. It is immediately apparent that Billy does not fit in with the rest and he soon gets into a fight with the others, storming off into his room.
Power of Shazam : In order to access the powers of Captain Marvel, Batson must invoke the name of the Wizard Shazam, thereby summoning the spells and energies of those extra-dimensional beings once known as "the gods on Earth". Batson also has ties to the Quintessence. Batson must invoke the spell in order to call upon these powers. In a burst of supernatural thunder and lightning, Captain Marvel wields the mighty powers of the immortals. Batson was able to share his power with others who are worthy. In this state, each person is in possession of a fragment of the power of "Captain Marvel".
By calling upon Shazam again, each member of the Marvels can once again return to their former identities. This allows one of their numbers, such as Billy or Mary, to have the full power of the spell.
The spell can be shared with others of noble intent and purity, such as Superman, who once switched identities with Captain Marvel.