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Customer Review

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic, 17 Sept. 2010
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This review is from: The Idea of Justice (Hardcover)
Yes it is quite repetitive, Sen really wants you to actually understand his ideas, so repeats his key messages quite a lot. Perhaps too often. But I'll forgive this as it convincingly demolishes some of the standard ideas in political philosophy. There is a nice irony in an Economist (an academic field largely filled with irrelevant work) showing that political philosophy is an academic field largely filled with irrelevant work.

Sen's Idea of Justice, isn't so much a concept of Justice, but a framework in which to think about justice. One should reject any form of transcendental institutionalism (we just need to figure out what the perfect institutions are) and instead urges us to ask "how do we change society for the better?" He doesn't so much propose an answer to this question, but that this should be the question we ask (and respond to from varying perspectives).

We will often have multiple conflicting objectives but perhaps in practice this isn't a problem, after there are many banal decisions we make everyday which have multiple objectives (cost/time/hunger/thirst/...). An important book, one of the best I've read in a long time.
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J. PORTER
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Top Reviewer Ranking: 82,548