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Wacky races: Miller, Pogge and Rawls, and conceptions of development in the global justice debate

Williams, Huw L. 2014. Wacky races: Miller, Pogge and Rawls, and conceptions of development in the global justice debate. Journal of International Political Theory 10 (2) , pp. 206-228. 10.1177/1755088214526020

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Abstract

David Miller criticises Thomas Pogge for placing excessive emphasis on the global environment in identifying the sources of global poverty. Miller argues that despite some structural obstacles, ‘careful drivers’ are able to negotiate their way along the road to development and it is wrong to place responsibility solely on those who have constructed the route. This article questions the analogy. It is argued that the complexities of global poverty make any attempt to identify straightforward outcome responsibility problematic, and that both Miller and Pogge’s interpretations of its causes may be regarded as partial. Furthermore, the analogy deployed by Miller reflects a reified notion of development, either explicit or assumed in arguments on global justice. An analogy of development as an anarchic car race is presented to initiate these criticisms, and as a premise for articulating John Rawls’ duty of assistance as a promising alternative – one that avoids the question of outcome responsibility, while being less prone to the accusation of ‘parochialism’.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: English, Communication and Philosophy
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > B Philosophy (General)
Publisher: SAGE
ISSN: 1755-0882
Last Modified: 14 May 2020 10:45
URI: http://orca-mwe.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/39544

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