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What Is Justice?

Classic and Contemporary Readings

Second Edition

Edited by Robert C. Solomon and Mark C. Murphy

Publication Date - 11 November 1999

ISBN: 9780195128109

366 pages
6-1/2 x 9-1/4 inches

In Stock


What is Justice? Classic and Contemporary Readings, 2/e, brings together many of the most prominent and influential writings on the topic of justice, providing an exceptionally comprehensive introduction to the subject. It places special emphasis on "social contract" theories of justice, both ancient and modern, culminating in the monumental work of John Rawls and various responses to his work. It also deals with questions of retributive justice and punishment, topics that are often excluded from other volumes on justice. This new edition features expanded and updated readings on justice and punishment and includes more recent responses to John Rawls's work.
Part One of the book features selections from classical sources including Homer, Plato, Aristotle, Aquinas, and Mencius, as well as excerpts from the Bible and the Koran. Part Two provides readings on the state of nature and the social contract, from Hobbes and Locke to Rawls, Nozick, Gauthier, and Baier. Part Three includes the Declaration of Independence and Amendments to the U.S. Constitution in addition to selections on property and social justice by Locke, Hume, Adam Smith, Engels, Marx, Mill, and several contemporary authors. Part Four offers a wide variety of readings on punishment, several of which address the death penalty. Part Five begins with selections from Rawls's work and includes responses from Dworkin, Nagel, Nozick, MacIntyre, Sandel, Walzer, Okin, and Rawls himself. Each selection is preceded by a brief introduction and each of the five parts opens with an introduction. The volume is further enhanced by a general introduction and an updated and extensive bibliography.
Ideal for a wide variety of courses including social and political philosophy, ethics, philosophy of law, and contemporary moral problems, What Is Justice?, 2/e, does not assume any philosophical or specialized background. It is also engaging reading for anyone interested in justice.

Previous Publication Date(s)

October 1990

Table of Contents

    Part One: Classical Sources
    Homer, from the Iliad
    "Justice, Equality, Desert," from the Bible
    Plato from the Republic
    Aristotle, from the Nicomachean Ethics
    "Justice, Retribution, and Mercy," from the Koran
    Aquinas, from Summa Theologica
    Mencius, from On the Mind
    Part Two: Justice and the Social Contract
    Hobbes, from Leviathan
    Locke, from Second Treatise on Government
    Rousseau, from A Discourse on Inequality and The Social Contract
    Hegel, from Phenomenology of Spirit
    Rawls, from A Theory of Justice
    Nozick, from Anarchy, State, and Utopia
    Gauthier, from "The Social Contract as Ideology"
    Baier, from "Trust and Antitrust"
    Part Three: Justice and Society
    The Declaration of Independence and Amendments to the Constitution of the United States of America
    Locke, from Second Treatise on Government
    Hume, from An Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Justice and A Treatise of Human Nature
    Adam Smith, from A Theory of Moral Sentiments and The Wealth of Nations
    Kant, from Philosophy of Law
    Hegel, from Philosophy of Right
    Mill, from Utilitarianism
    Engels, from Anti-Duhring, and Marx, from A Critique of the Gotha Programme
    von Hayek, from The Mirage of Social Justice
    Bernard Williams, from "The Idean of Equality
    David Miller, from Social Justice
    Part Four: Justice and Punishment
    Pietro Marongiu and Graeme Newman, from Vengeance
    Nozick, from Philosophical Explanations
    Bentham, from Introduction to the Principles of Morals and Legislation
    Kant, from Philosophy of Law
    Hegel, from Philosophy of Right
    Nietzsche, from On the Genealogy of Morals
    Rawls, from "Two Concepts of Rules"
    Michael Moore, from "The Moral Worth of Retribution"
    Jean Hampton, from "The Moral Education Theory of Punishment"
    Robert Solomon, from A Passion for Justice
    United States Supreme Court, Gregg v. Georgia
    Hugo Bedau, from "Capital Punishment and Retributive Justice"
    Ernst van den Haag, from "Deterrence and the Death Penalty"
    Camus, from "Reflections on the Guillotine"
    Part Five: The Contemporary Debate on Distributive Justice
    Rawls, from A Theory of Justice
    Dworkin, from "The Original Position"
    Thomas Nagel, from "Rawls on Justice"
    Nozick, from Anarchy, State and Utopia
    MacIntyre, from After Virtue
    Michael Sandel, from Liberalism and the Limits of Justice
    Michael Walzer, from Spheres of Justice
    Susan Moller Okin, from Justice, Gender and the Family
    Rawls, from "Justice as Fairness: Political not Metaphysical"

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