The state, national identity and distributive justice. (In special issue: British national identity in a European context. Guest editor: Bhikhu Parekh)
New Community, 21, (2), .
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This article explores the issue of whether socialists and left-liberals commit themselves to valuing a shared national identity by defending redistributive policies. It begins by criticising Michael Sandel's argument that Rawls and other 'deontological liberals' cannot defend principles of justice which require redistribution unless they view the self as partially constituted by its attachment to the community over which redistribution is to occur. It then focuses upon David Miller's claim that redistribution will receive widespread support on grounds of social justice only if citizens see themselves as fellow nationals. It argues that Miller's claim has some plausibility, but does not provide sufficiently strong grounds for aiming to foster a substantive shared national identity in societies such as Britain which contain a high degree of cultural pluralism.
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