Chapter

The Empirical Study of Justice

Jon Elster

in Pluralism, Justice, and Equality

Published in print April 1995 | ISBN: 9780198280088
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191599927 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0198280084.003.0005
 The Empirical Study of Justice

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Jon Elster surveys and classifies a wide range of literature that informs the study of justice. He positions Michael Walzer's theory of justice in relation to the three main categories into which he believes studies of justice fall: descriptive, explanatory, and normative. In comparing Walzer's and his own account of the relevance of empirical findings for normative analysis, Elster aims to show that the complexity of the relationship between the two is not accurately captured by Walzer.

Keywords: descriptive theory; empirical data; explanatory theory; justice; literature; normative theory

Chapter.  6740 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Political Theory

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