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Read online or Download On Inequality (Full PDF ebook with essay, research paper)
by Harry G. Frankfurt

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Princeton University Press
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4.70(w) x 7.10(h) x 0.70(d)



Economic inequality is one of the most divisive issues of our time. Yet few would argue that inequality is a greater evil than poverty. The poor suffer because they don't have enough, not because others have more, and some have far too much. So why do many people appear to be more distressed by the rich than by the poor?

In this provocative book, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of On Bullshit presents a compelling and unsettling response to those who believe that the goal of social justice should be economic equality or less inequality. Harry Frankfurt, one of the most influential moral philosophers in the world, argues that we are morally obligated to eliminate poverty--not achieve equality or reduce inequality. Our focus should be on making sure everyone has a sufficient amount to live a decent life. To focus instead on inequality is distracting and alienating.

At the same time, Frankfurt argues that the conjunction of vast wealth and poverty is offensive. If we dedicate ourselves to making sure everyone has enough, we may reduce inequality as a side effect. But it's essential to see that the ultimate goal of justice is to end poverty, not inequality.

A serious challenge to cherished beliefs on both the political left and right, On Inequality promises to have a profound impact on one of the great debates of our time.


Editorial Reviews

The New York Times Book Review - James Ryerson
Most critics of economic egalitarianism, convinced that the only way to promote equal levels of wealth is to constrain people from acting freely, are troubled by a threat to liberty. This is not what troubles Frankfurt. He worries that a fixation on economic equality diverts our attention from fundamental questions that ultimately have nothing to do with how much money other people have. Namely: What is it that you want? What will satisfy you? In this way, Frankfurt's anti-egalitarianism is more of a philosophical challenge than a libertarian crusade.

Related Subjects

  • ">Philosophy - General & Miscellaneous
  • ">Poverty
  • ">Poverty->Moral and ethical aspects

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