Metaphysics and Justice

Nils Holtug

in Persons, Interests, and Justice

Published in print April 2010 | ISBN: 9780199580170
Published online May 2010 | e-ISBN: 9780191722707 | DOI:
Metaphysics and Justice

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In Chapter 4, the Prudential View, according to which self‐interest is a function not just of welfare but also of Relation M was proposed. This view has implications for our account of justice. For example, according to the ‘Compensation Argument’, it is possible for an individual to be compensated for her low welfare at one time by her high welfare at another time. Therefore, what matters for distributive justice is her welfare over her life taken as a whole. However, if we accept the Prudential View, what the Compensation Argument suggests is not Whole Lives Prioritarianism, but ‘Prudential Prioritarianism’. According to Prudential Prioritarianism, roughly, the moral value of a benefit to an individual at one time depends on both the size of the benefit and on the individual's self‐interest, at that time, in the other benefits that accrue to her at this and other times.

Keywords: prudential prioritarianism; temporal unit of distributive concern; compensation argument; badness of death; distribution‐sensitivity; metaphysics

Chapter.  22015 words. 

Subjects: Moral Philosophy

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