The demandingness of Nozick’s ‘Lockean’ proviso

Josh Milburn

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    5 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Interpreters of Robert Nozick’s political philosophy fall into two broad groups concerning his application of the ‘Lockean proviso’. Some read his argument in an undemanding way: individual instances of ownership which make people worse off than they would have been in a world without any ownership are unjust. Others read the argument in a demanding way: individual instances of ownership which make people worse off than they would have been in a world without that particular ownership are unjust. While I argue that the former reading is correct as an interpretive matter, I suggest that this reading is nonetheless highly demanding. In particular, I argue that it is demanding when it is expanded to include the protection of nonhuman animals; if such beings are right bearers, as more and more academics are beginning to suggest, then there is no nonarbitrary reason to exclude them from the protection of the proviso.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)276-292
    JournalEuropean Journal of Political Theory
    Volume15
    Issue number3
    Early online date16 Dec 2014
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Jul 2016

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