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catalogue – 43669
Until 01.01.2019 - Scientific Yearbook of the Institute of Philosophy and Law of the Ural Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences

ISSN 2686-7206 (Print)

ISSN 2686-925X (Оnlinе)

Balashov Dmitry
 For half a century, the problem of justice has been one of the most controversial and debated in Western academic science. For the Anglo-American tradition, the starting point for controversy about distributive justice can be considered 1971, when the philosopher John Rawls published work The Theory of Justice. This book made a revolution, on the one hand, provoking a large-scale discussion on the question of what fair principles should be used in our society, and, on the other hand, finally brought deontological ethics to the leading positions in political philosophy, which replaced the utilitarian approach. Several decades after the publication of Rawls's work, the debate within the framework of the deontological approach to justice reached a kind of dead end, having failed to develop a universal position. Other areas of thought have become the most discussed topics in political philosophy. At the same time, the discussion within the framework of the problem of distributive justice remained extremely relevant, since directly related to the distribution of public goods, which is always one of the main problems of political choice. One of those who suggested a way out of the current impasse was the philosopher Amartya Sen, who proposed an original concept for solving, called “the capability approach”. The purpose of this article is to illustrate how Sen was able to overcome the difficulties faced by Rawls's theory and other new theories of social contract. The author of the article believes that Sen, in fact, returned to a kind of utilitarian ethics, in the controversy with which Rawls developed his deontological version of the theory of justice. The article attempts to substantiate that the capability approach is a kind of synthesis of deontological ethics and utilitarianism. The article examines utilitarian ethics, its criticism from Rawls and the solution that Rawls proposes in the framework of the deontological approach, examines the main differences between new theories of social contract and Sen's the capability approach. The article analyzes Sen's criticism of the theory of Rawls and his followers and Sen's solution to the problem of justice. Particular emphasis is placed on the comparison of deontological and utilitarian views on the problem of justice. At the end of the work, it is concluded that the deontological ethical position on the issue of justice, which has firmly taken the leading positions in the Anglo-American academic community since the 1970s. XX century at the turn of the century could not remain monolithic and faced serious criticism. Utilitarianism, so heavily criticized by Rawls, is back in a new iteration of Sen's the capability approach.
Keywords: utilitarianism; consequentialism; teleological ethics; theory of justice; initial situation; veil of ignorance; free rider problem; capability approach.
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