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Responding to Global Poverty
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Book description

This book explores the nature of moral responsibilities of affluent individuals in the developed world, addressing global poverty and arguments that philosophers have offered for having these responsibilities. The first type of argument grounds responsibilities in the ability to avert serious suffering by taking on some cost. The second argument seeks to ground responsibilities in the fact that the affluent are contributing to such poverty. The authors criticise many of the claims advanced by those who seek to ground stringent responsibilities to the poor by invoking these two types of arguments. It does not follow from this that the affluent are meeting responsibilities to the poor. The book argues that while people are not ordinarily required to make large sacrifices in assisting others in severe need, they are required to incur moderate costs to do so. If the affluent fail consistently to meet standards, this fact can substantially increase the costs they are required to bear in order to address it.


'In sum, this book has great value as an overview of the global justice literature and as a rigorous exposition of the key categories involved in doing, allowing, and enabling harm. Students of the field or, for that matter, nonstudents who want to know what political theory has to offer on the subject of global poverty, will find Responding to Global Poverty invaluable; no better summary of what analytical political theory has to offer is available.'

Chris Brown Source: Ethics and International Affairs

'… the book is invaluable in bringing together often disconnected debates from the philosophy of action, global justice, the philosophy of law and practical ethics, helping the reader to comprehend the conceptual building blocks and moral structure of the pressing problem of global poverty. In their effort to offer a coherent conceptual framework, the authors appear at times as trying to fit the various strands of the debate into a single straightjacket. In conclusion, the book will repay careful reading by anyone interested in understanding the complexity of global poverty, in particular advanced undergraduate and graduate students of the social sciences and philosophy, as well as policy makers and those working in the field who are interested in a more sophisticated account.'

George Pavlakos Source: Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews

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