World Poverty and Human Rights

World Poverty and Human Rights : Cosmopolitan Responsibilities and Reforms

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The poorest 46 percent of humankind have 1.2 percent of global income. Their purchasing power per person per day is less than that of $2.15 in the US in 1993; 826 million of them do not have enough to eat. One-third of all human deaths are from poverty-related causes: 18 million annually, including 12 million children under five. At the other end, the 15 percent of humankind in the 'high-income economies' have 80 percent of global income. Shifting 1 or 2 percent of our share toward poverty eradication seems morally compelling. Yet the prosperous 1990s have in fact brought a large shift toward greater global inequality, as most of the affluent believe that they have no such responsibility. Thomas Pogge's book seeks to explain how this belief is sustained. He analyses how our moral and economic theorizing and our global economic order have adapted to make us appear disconnected from massive poverty abroad. Dispelling the illusion, he also offers a modest, widely sharable standard of global economic justice and makes detailed, realistic proposals toward fulfilling it.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 296 pages
  • 149.86 x 226.06 x 22.86mm | 408.23g
  • Polity Press
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • Repr.
  • 0
  • 0745629954
  • 9780745629957
  • 1,771,151

Review quote

"This book is the product of a powerful and generative philosophical imagination. ... This is certainly the most acute study of the moral dimensions of world poverty to date; it is also a significant work of philosophy in its own right." Ethics & International Affairs "World Poverty and Human Rights is an outstandingly well argued contribution in the debate of political philosophy. Pogge provides a consistent moral account of international justice as well as the relevant facts and dispels the illusion that we are disconnected from massive poverty abroad." International Journal of Contemporary Sociology "Those familiar with Pogge's writings will welcome the publication, in a single volume, of some of the most important articles to date on global justice. Others will find the arguments therein fascinating, not least because the author addresses difficult institutional questions that philosophers overlook" Cecile Fabre, London School of Economics "The book is a powerful work in moral philosophy, chock full of arguments and relevant empirical data." Hugh LaFollette, Ethics "An impressive contribution." Ethical Theory and Moral Practiceshow more

Table of contents

Introduction.I Some Cautions About Our Moral JudgementsII Four Easy Reasons to Ignore World PovertyIII Defending Our Acquiescence in World PovertyIV Does Our New Global Economic Order Really Not Harm the Poor?V Responsibilities and ReformsChapter 1: Human Flourishing and Universal Justice1.0 Introduction1.1 Social Justice1.2 Paternalism1.3 Justice in First Approximation1.4 Essential Refinements1.5 Human Rights1.6 Specification of Human Rights and Responsibilities for their Realization1.7 ConclusionChapter 2: How Should Human Rights be Conceived?2.0 Introduction2.1 From Natural Law to Rights2.2 From Natural Rights to Human Rights2.3 Official Disrespect2.4 The Libertarian Critique of Social and Economic Rights2.5 The Critique of Social and Economic Rights as 'Manifesto Rights'2.6 Disputes about Kinds of Human RightsChapter 3: Loopholes in Moralities3.0 Introduction3.1 Types of Incentives3.2 Loopholes3.3 Social Arrangements3.4 Case 1: The Converted Apartment Building3.5 Case 2: The Homelands Policy of White South Africa3.6 An Objection3.7 Strengthening3.8 Fictional Histories3.9 Puzzles of Equivalence3.10 ConclusionChapter 4: Moral Universalism and Global Economic Justice4.0 Introduction4.1 Moral Universalism4.2 Our Moral Assessment of National and Global Economic Orders4.3 Some Factual Background about the Global Economic Order4.3.1 The Extent of World Poverty4.3.2 The Extent of Global Inequality4.3.3 Trends in World Poverty and Inequality 4.4 Conceptions of National and Global Economic Justice Contrasted4.5 Moral Universalism and David Miller's Contextualism4.6 Contextualist Moral Universalism and John Rawls's Moral Conception4.7 Rationalizing Divergent Moral Conceptions Through a Double Standard4.8 Rationalizing Divergent Moral Conceptions Without a Double Standard4.9 The Causal Role of Global Institutions in the Persistence of Severe Poverty4.10 ConclusionChapter 5: The Bounds of Nationalism5.0 Introduction5.1 Common Nationalism - Priority for the Interests of Compatriots5.2 Lofty Nationalism - The Justice-for-Compatriots Priority5.3 Explanatory Nationalism - The Deep Significance of National Borders5.4 ConclusionChapter 6: Achieving Democracy6.0 Introduction6.1 The Structure of the Problem Faced by Fledgling Democracies6.2 Reducing the Expected Rewards of Coups d'Etat6.3 Undermining the Borrowing Privilege of Authoritarian Predators6.3.1 The Criterial Problem6.3.2 The Tit-For-Tat Problem6.3.3 The Establishment Problem6.3.4 Synthesis6.4 Undermining the Resource Privilege of Authoritarian Predators6.5 ConclusionChapter 7: Cosmopolitanism and Sovereignty7.0 Introduction7.1 Institutional Cosmopolitanism Based on Human Rights7.2 The Idea of State Sovereignty7.3 Some Main Reasons for a Vertical Dispersal of Sovereignty7.3.1 Peace and Security7.3.2 Reducing Oppression7.3.3 Global Economic Justice7.3.4 Ecology/Democracy7.4 The Shaping and Reshaping of Political Units7.5 ConclusionChapter 8: Eradicating Systemic Poverty: Brief for a Global Resources Dividend8.0 Introduction8.1 Radical Inequality and Our Responsibility8.2 Three Grounds of Injustice8.2.1 The Effects of Shared Social Institutions8.2.2 Uncompensated Exclusion from the Use of Natural Resources8.2.3 The Effects of a Common and Violent History8.3 A Moderate Proposal8.4 The Moral Argument for the Proposed Reform8.5 Is the Reform Proposal Realistic?8.6 ConclusionNotesBibliographyIndexshow more

About Thomas Pogge

Thomas W. Pogge is Associate Professor of Philosophy, Columbia Universityshow more

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147 ratings
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4 42% (62)
3 17% (25)
2 5% (7)
1 2% (3)
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