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Unformatted text preview: 38 Rights, Equality, Liberty and Justice UNIT 20 JUSTICE Structure 20.0 Objectives 20.1 Introduction 20.2 Meaning of Justice 20.2.1 Justice and Law 20.2.2 Justice and Discrimination 20.3 Distributive Justice 20.3.1 Distributive Justice and Economic Justice 20.4 Social Justice 20.4.1 Predominance of the Interest of the Comnunity 20.4.2 Reforms or Social Change 20.4.3 Pound’s Illustration of Social Justice 20.4.4 Criticism of Social Justice 20.5 Procedural Justice 20.6 John Rawls’s Theory of Justice 20.7 Justice: A Term of Synthesis 20.8 Let Us Sum Up 20.9 Some Useful References 20.10 Answers to Check Your Progress Exercises 20.0 OBJECTIVES This unit discusses one of the most basic and important concepts in political science in general, and political theory in particular. After studying this unit, you should be able to: • Define the meaning of the concept of justice; • Distinguish between the various aspects of justice; • Identify and describe the different theories of the nature of justice; • Describe the relationship between liberty, equality, law and justice. 20.1 INTRODUCTION By now, you all must be knowing about the concepts like law, rights, liberty and equality. A prior study of these concepts will help in understanding the concept of justice. The element of justice, in fact, connects the above mentioned themes. In this unit, we shall first try to understand the meaning of the concept in its different aspects. Then, we shall study the different theories of justice. We shall also try to bring out the relationship between justice on one hand and law, liberty and equality on the other. Justice is one of the important aims of the state. One of the earliest treaties on politics, Plato’s ‘Republic’ was an attempt to construct a just state. Justice was its 39 Justice central concept. Therefore, a correct understanding of this concept will help in evaluating different political systems, their policies and the ideologies on which they are based. Thus, justice is the reconciler and synthesizer of political values and as said by Aristotle it is ‘what answers to the whole of goodness’. 20.2 MEANING OF JUSTICE Any discussion of the concept of justice has to take into account its multi dimensional character. The answer to ‘what is justice’ can only be given by indicating guidelines (values) along which men have thought of justice and will continue to do so. It changes with the passage of time. Thus, what was justice in the past, may be injustice in the present and vice-versa. Thus, there have been the ‘egalitarian’ perception of justice where the highest place is accorded to the value of equality; the ‘libertarian’ perception in which liberty is the ultimate value; the Divine view in which justice is the execution of God’s will, the ‘hedonist’ makes ‘the greatest good of the greatest number’ the criterion of justice; to the ‘harmonizer’ justice is the harmonizing of different elements and values to produce a satisfactory balance. Someharmonizing of different elements and values to produce a satisfactory balance....
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This note was uploaded on 03/13/2012 for the course IR 101 taught by Professor Harfancoofers during the Spring '12 term at Sunway University College.
- Spring '12