Acta Analytica 28 (4):495-508 (2013)

Adam Hosein
Northeastern University
Rawls developed a contractualist theory of social justice and Scanlon attempted to extend the Rawlsian framework to develop a theory of rightness, or morality more generally. I argue that there are some good reasons to adopt a contractualist theory of social justice, but that it is a mistake to adopt a contractualist theory of rightness. I begin by illustrating the major shared features of Scanlon and Rawls’ theories. I then show that the justification for these features in Rawls’ theory, the centrality of cooperative fairness to social justice, cannot be used to defend their use in Scanlon’s. Finally, I argue that Scanlon has not provided an adequate alternative defense of these features, and show that they create problems when contractualists try to explain major features of our common-sense morality
Keywords Contractualism  Rawls  Scanlon  Justice  Fairness  Generality
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DOI 10.1007/s12136-013-0198-0
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References found in this work BETA

What We Owe to Each Other.Thomas Scanlon - 1998 - Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.
Ethics Without Principles.Jonathan Dancy - 2004 - Oxford University Press.
Moral Dimensions: Permissibility, Meaning, Blame.Thomas Scanlon - 2008 - Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.
What We Owe to Each Other.Thomas Scanlon - 2002 - Mind 111 (442):323-354.

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