Are reasons enough? Sen and Ricoeur on the idea of impartiality

Todd S. Mei

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    1 Citation (Scopus)


    Amartya Sen argues that a conception of impartiality built upon “trans-positional objectivity” provides a potential remedy to conflicts of distributive justice by securing the most “reasonable reasons” in a debate. This article undertakes a critical analysis of Sen’s theory by contrasting it with Paul Ricoeur’s claim that impartiality is a normative concept and therefore that the demand faced within the arena of competing distributive claims is not one of providing the most reasonable reasons but of exposing and understanding the role of convictions that underwrite normative frameworks, or ethical orders.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)243-270
    Number of pages28
    JournalDialogue: Canadian Philosophical Review
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - Jun 2014


    • Ricoeur
    • Sen
    • Impartiality
    • Convictions
    • Justice


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