List journal issues    
 
 
Home List journal issues Table of contents Subscribe to APQ

Article

Volume 50 • Number 1

January 2013



 

 

Equality and Transparency


by Julien Beillard


The principle of human moral equality is poorly understood. I criticize standard accounts and propose a mildly subversive alternative based in a certain view of the phenomenology of conceptual thought. First, a formulation of the principle:

(E) Every person has a basic moral worth equal to that of any other.

E is vague, as it should be. It is neutral regarding rival theories of the nature of the equalizing property or its value, or how we recognize either. But I impose two constraints on the principle that seem to reflect a universal consensus among its proponents: E asserts a kind of worth (or status or value) that (i) is indifferent to ordinary moral judgments of character, merit, or desert and (ii) forbids political arrangements we intuitively judge to be at odds with the spirit of basic equality. The first constraint protects against absurdity or nihilism, the second against vacuity.


view PDF
 

 

 

 
Home | Issue Index
 
© 2012 by the Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois
Content in American Philosophical Quarterly is intended for personal, noncommercial use only. You may not reproduce, publish, distribute, transmit, participate in the transfer or sale of, modify, create derivative works from, display, or in any way exploit the American Philosophical Quarterly database in whole or in part without the written permission of the copyright holder.

American Philosophical Quarterly is published by the University of Illinois Press on behalf of North American Philosophical Publications.

ISSN: 2152-1123