<b>Begging</b> <b>Begging</b>

Christine Sypnowich

in The Egalitarian Conscience

Published in print March 2006 | ISBN: 9780199281688
Published online May 2006 | e-ISBN: 9780191603747 | DOI:
   Begging     Begging

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This essay considers the moral dilemma confronting pedestrians who encounter beggars in well-off societies governed by social welfare systems. If Cohen’s call for extending the scope of justice to the domain of the personal is taken seriously, it would seem to call for generosity towards people who ask for money on city streets. It is argued that principles of justice, in fact, tell against giving alms. The phenomenology of begging rightly produces ambivalence among advantaged persons who are asked to contribute to the disadvantaged, in an ad hoc and unsystematic way.

Keywords: begging; charity; equality; justice; duty; citizenship

Chapter.  8235 words. 

Subjects: Political Theory

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