Equal pay as a precondition of justice?

In A. Örtenblad (ed.), Debating Equal Pay for All: Economy, Practicability and Ethics. Palgrave macmillan. pp. 255-266 (2021)
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Abstract

Equality is typically presumed to be an end of justice; however, in this chapter, we argue that it is better understood as a condition of justice. Our argument draws on the Just World Fallacy, the phenomenon of people mistakenly believing fortuitous patterns of reward or harm to be reflective of justice. This phenomenon can undermine relationships of equality even where differences in reward or harm are ostensibly deserved. If everyone received equal pay, then the propensity for people to defer to the more successful or derogate the less successful would be diminished, and thus there would be greater scope for people to enter into the sorts of relationships of equal respect and regard that just communities require.

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Matthew Sinnicks
University of Southampton

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