From each according to their ability

Ben Jackson

in Equality and the British Left

Published by Manchester University Press

Published in print November 2011 | ISBN: 9780719073069
Published online July 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781781701454 | DOI:
From each according to their ability

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This chapter establishes that progressives of the early twentieth century based their ideas about social justice on a strong principle of economic reciprocity, and a firm conviction that market rewards took no account of the social character of economic production. The British Left saw economic prosperity as the product of the collective efforts of the whole community rather than as the result of the heroic dynamism of isolated wealth-creators. Although progressives therefore thought that it was fair to make income conditional on some form of social contribution, they did not believe that income should be proportionate to the market value of that contribution.

Keywords: progressives; social justice; economic production; economic reciprocity; British Left; prosperity; social contribution

Chapter.  11229 words. 

Subjects: UK Politics

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