Human Worth and Human Rights: Based on John Rawls' Contractualism
Menneskeverd: Humanistiske Perspektiver, pp. 109-127, J. Wetlesen, ed., Oslo: Universitetet i Oslo, 1992
11 Pages Posted: 30 Dec 2010
Date Written: 1992
I sketch how international human rights can be understood and be justified on the basis of human worth within a contractualist perspective similar to that presented in John Rawls' theory of domestic distributive justice. The present sketch addresses the subject of the relationship between states, and the role of human rights in that regard (cf. Follesdal 1991 for a more elaborate presentation.) I shall be particularly concerned to show that the contractualist tradition, which emphasizes human worth and certain institutional kinds of equality among citizens, nevertheless can permit larger economic inequalities among individuals of different states.
Keywords: international human rights, Rawls, contractualism, justice, equality
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