The Two Faces of Justice (Google eBook)

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Harvard University Press, Jun 1, 2009 - Law - 264 pages
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Justice is a human virtue that is at once unconditional and conditional. Under favorable circumstances, we can be motivated to act justly by the belief that we must live up to what justice requires, irrespective of whether we benefit from doing so. But our will to act justly is subject to conditions. We find it difficult to exercise the virtue of justice when others regularly fail to. Even if we appear to have overcome the difficulty, our reluctance often betrays itself in certain moral emotions.

In this book, Jiwei Ci explores the dual nature of justice, in an attempt to make unitary sense of key features of justice reflected in its close relation to resentment, punishment, and forgiveness. Rather than pursue a search for normative principles, he probes the human psychology of justice to understand what motivates moral agents who seek to behave justly, and why their desire to be just is as precarious as it is uplifting.

A wide-ranging treatment of enduring questions, "The Two Faces of Justice" can also be read as a remarkably discerning contribution to the Western discourse on justice re-launched in our time by John Rawls.

  

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Contents

Introduction
1
Elements of a Just Disposition
13
The Subjective Circumstances of Justice
45
The Objective Circumstances of Justice
67
The Idea of Voluntary Justice
93
The Moral Reach of Rational Egoism
102
Impartiality and Justification
116
A Progress of Reciprocity
135
Two Paths to Unconditional Justice
157
Forgetting and Resentment
173
Individual Forgiveness Social Resentment
187
Justice and the Moralization of Sympathy
206
Justice as a Conscious Virtue
232
Index
249
Copyright

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About the author (2009)

Jiwei Ci teaches moral and political philosophy at the University of Hong Kong and is the author of Dialectic of the Chinese Revolution: From Utopianism to Hedonism.

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