Handbook on Global Social Justice
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Handbook on Global Social Justice

Edited by Gary Craig

In the fifty years since Rawls seminal work A Theory of Justice, the concept has been debated with those on the political right and left advocating very different understandings. This unique global collection, written by a group of international experts, offers wide-ranging analyses of the meaning of social justice that challenge the ability of the market to provide social justice for all. The Handbook also looks at how the theory of social justice informs practice within a range of occupations or welfare divisions.
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Chapter 3: Income, work and justice

Andrew Sayer


How does the concept of social justice apply to the sphere of work and income? The author focuses in this chapter on the economic sphere most critical for individuals. He argues that with modern economies offering huge scope for injustice, Rawls’ largely abstract analysis allows moral and political philosophy to ignore actually existing economic practices and the concrete forms of injustice they are associated with. He therefore attempts to provide the reader with a guide to how such elements of individual economic life such as earned income, unearned income, transfers, investment, wealth, what he calls ‘improperty’ and so on, reflect (or not) aspects of social justice. He also provides a sense of what kinds of socio-economic policies might help us achieve it.

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