Chris Armstrong

in Rethinking Equality

Published by Manchester University Press

Published in print June 2006 | ISBN: 9780719069246
Published online July 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781781701287 | DOI:

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This book attempts to reframe or reorient the political theory of equality. It begins by drawing a distinction between two such framings: the approach which is prevalent in the ‘equality of what?’ literature, and an alternative approach that is made possible by conceiving equality and inequality in relation to the ideal of equal citizenship. It considers a number of diverse criticisms levelled at the theories of John Rawls, Ronald Dworkin, and proponents of luck egalitarianism. Whilst political gains are supposedly made by incorporating the values of choice and responsibility from New Right or neoliberal rhetoric, the protagonists in the luck egalitarian debate have not properly interrogated the ways in which these ideas are deployed within neoliberalism. The book also argues that the development of post-Rawlsian liberal egalitarian theory clearly parallels the transition from social citizenship to the neoliberal vision of active citizenship. Moreover, it cast doubt on Nancy Fraser's theory on recognition and redistribution, and argued instead for the centrality of hierarchy and oppression as the key targets of egalitarian politics.

Keywords: equality; citizenship; John Rawls; Ronald Dworkin; luck egalitarianism; choice; responsibility; Nancy Fraser; recognition; redistribution

Chapter.  3169 words. 

Subjects: Political Theory

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