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Equality and Partiality / Edition 1

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Overview

Derived from Thomas Nagel's 1990 Locke Lectures, Equality and Partiality proposes that ethics, and the ethical basis of political theory, have to be understood as arising from the division between two standpoints, the personal and the impersonal. While the impersonal standpoint in each of us produces a powerful demand for universal impartiality and equality, the personal standpoint gives rise to individualistic motives and requirements which impede the pursuit and realization of such ideals. Nagel argues that any legitimate political system must achieve an integration of these two standpoints, and develops this idea in relation to specific problems of international justice, social and economic inequality, toleration, and the support of culture.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"There is much in this short and illuminating book to stimulate serious thought about a wide range of issues in contemporary political theory. Nagel's style is deceptively simple, masking an unusual depth and complexity of view....For those who have read widely in the recent literature of political philosophy, it is a rare treat."—American Political Science Review

"A clear, sometimes subtle and elegant book."—Society

"Thomas Nagel is just about the most interesting philosopher of our day. Without descending to rhetorical tricks, he conveys a wonderful sense of the urgency of the issues he writes about....[Nagel's] deftness of touch and delicacy of intellectual imagination are exactly what the subject demands."—Times Literary Supplement

"[Nagel] is focused on the right issues, and his discussion of them is both lucid and illuminating. The book is certainly required reading for those working in the area of political philosophy."—The Review of Politics

"On all these subjects [Nagel discusses] we get tough-minded, honest, insightful, imaginative thought expressed in lucid prose, fully accessible to the nonprofessional, and clearly relevant to the most important political issues of our time. In a more rational world this book would have the best-seller status that Allen Bloom's had."—Philosophical Review

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195098396
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Publication date: 5/11/1995
  • Edition description: REPRINT
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 208
  • Sales rank: 1,145,171
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.57 (d)

Table of Contents

1 Introduction 3
2 Two Standpoints 10
3 The Problem of Utopianism 21
4 Legitimacy and Unanimity 33
5 Kant's Test 41
6 The Moral Division of Labor 53
7 Egalitarianism 63
8 Problems of Convergence 75
9 Problems of Structure 85
10 Equality and Motivation 96
11 Options 120
12 Inequality 130
13 Rights 139
14 Toleration 154
15 Limits: The World 169
Bibliography 181
Index 185
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