Chapter 7: Civilizing processes and the social question reprised
Restricted access

Particularly noteworthy with respect to the social question is William Stanley Jevons's belief that social progress would entail a continual shrinkage in the social services as people became ever better at making their way in modern society. To the contrary, the social services are expanding and not contracting. Equality is a vexatious topic for any theory of political economy because it quickly induces some taking of sides in a dispute that seems to go nowhere. It is surely plausible to claim that some measure of equality is necessary for a well-ordered society. It is easy to appraise equality through such monetary measures as Gini coefficients. This attractiveness surely reflects the materialism that dominates modern economics. This chapter, to the contrary, explores equality from inside an immaterial orientation where people are engaged principally in constructing their lives, and with people varying in their abilities and opportunities to do that.

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

Access options

Get access to the full article by using one of the access options below.

Other access options

Redeem Token

Institutional Login

Log in with Open Athens, Shibboleth, or your institutional credentials

Login via Institutional Access

Personal login

Log in with your Elgar Online account

Login with your Elgar account