Prioritizing Evils Over Unjust Inequalities

Claudia Card

in The Atrocity Paradigm

Published in print October 2002 | ISBN: 9780195145083
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780199833115 | DOI:
 Prioritizing Evils Over Unjust Inequalities

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Noting that unjust inequalities need not be evils, this chapter argues that political activists (including feminists) should take evil, rather than inequality, as their guiding concept and prioritize addressing evils over simply eliminating wrongful inequalities. The atrocity theory supports the kinds of feminism that target severe oppression or those that target such evils as domestic violence, rape, severely hazardous working conditions, and involuntary homelessness as more urgent than, for example, workplace inequities or inequities addressed by affirmative action. Prioritizing evils need not mean ignoring lesser injustices or even spending most of our incomes to alleviate the plight of victims of evil. Rather, it means that over time and in the design of social institutions, we devote significant attention to the prevention or alleviation of evils, whatever else we may also do toward other ends.

Keywords: evils; feminism; inequalities; oppression; priorities; social justice

Chapter.  10388 words. 

Subjects: Aesthetics and Philosophy of Art

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