Friday, February 12, 2010

Sen's Justice

A translation of Amartya Sen's Idea of Justice has just come out in France, remarkably soon after its appearance in English. The book is well reviewed here by Emmanuelle Bénicourt, who admirably draws out the key arguments: a critique of John Rawls' Theory of Justice based on Sen's contention, backed by his Nobel prize-winning work on social choice theory, that what Rawls calls "the original position" will not lead to agreement about principles of justice, as Rawls believed; and, second, that judgments about what is just are comparative rather than absolute.

I mention this review and this book not only for their intrinsic interest but also because I will be touching on Sen's critique of Rawls when I lecture later this year at the Collège de France on the subject of  "Fairness in Democracy" (May 7, 11 AM, for those of you who may be in Paris at the time).

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

congrats on the Collège de France gig