Seeing Through the Fog: Love and Injustice in Bleak House

Journal of Religious Ethics 31 (1):23-44 (2003)
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The author takes up a provocative question poised by Charles Taylor about the relationship between our commitments to a good such as neighbor love and the possibilities of achieving and sustaining social justice. Taylor's concern is not only that we make such a commitment but that we make it in such a way that we avoid its ability to lead us towards injustice rather than justice. After articulating conceptions of love, justice, and injustice, the author turns to Charles Dickens's treatment of love and injustice in Bleak House, to explore more fully how love can lead to injustice, and also its potential role in promoting justice. Dickens's view, profoundly shaped by his own sense of Christian virtues, helps us see the inner workings of love, justice, and injustice, so that we can appreciate their interconnectedness anew and understand better the urgency of Taylor's question for our time.



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