Paul Seabright: Pluralism and the Standard of Living

Derek Parfit

in The Quality of Life

Published in print March 1993 | ISBN: 9780198287971
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191596704 | DOI:

Series: WIDER Studies in Development Economics

  Paul Seabright: Pluralism and the Standard of Living

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Parfit first takes on Seabright's contractualist assumption (‘Nothing is society's business unless it could be the subject of an appropriate hypothetical social contract’) and questions Seabright's view about what could be covered by such a hypothetical agreement. Parfit then attacks Seabright's method of assessing the value of various goods and services. Finally, Parfit exposes the ambiguity in Seabright's appeal to pluralism.

Keywords: assessment; contractarianism; measurement; pluralism; social contract

Chapter.  3662 words. 

Subjects: Economic Development and Growth

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