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  • Benjamin Ferguson (a1)

According to some accounts of exploitation, most notably Ruth Sample’s (2003) degradation-based account and Robert Goodin’s (1987) vulnerability-based account, exploitation occurs when an advantaged party fails to constrain their advantage in light of another’s disadvantage, regardless of the cause of this disadvantage. Because the duty of constraint in these accounts does not depend on the cause of the disadvantage, the advantaged’s duty of constraint is what I call a ‘come-what-may’ duty. I show that come-what-may duties create moral hazards that can themselves be exploited by the disadvantaged parties. In such cases these accounts of exploitation are either self-frustrating or over-demanding.

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J. Elster 1982. Roemer versus Roemer: a comment on “New Directions in the Marxian Theory of Exploitation and Class”. Politics and Society 11: 363373.

M. Fleurbaey 2008. Fairness, Responsibility, and Welfare. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

M. Nussbaum 2003. Capabilities as fundamental entitlements: Sen and social justice. Feminist Economics 9: 3359.

J. Roemer 1982. A General Theory of Exploitation and Class. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

H. Steiner 1984. A liberal theory of exploitation. Ethics 94: 225241.

Z. Stemplowska 2009. Making justice sensitive to responsibility. Political Studies 57: 237259.

A. Wood 1995. Exploitation. Social Philosophy and Policy 12: 135158.

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Economics & Philosophy
  • ISSN: 0266-2671
  • EISSN: 1474-0028
  • URL: /core/journals/economics-and-philosophy
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