Egalitarianism, the view that equality matters, attracts a great deal of attention amongst contemporary political theorists. And yet it has turned out to be surprisingly difficult to provide a fully satisfactory egalitarian theory. The cutting-edge articles in Egalitarianism move the debate forward. They are written by some of the leading political philosophers in the field. Recent issues in the debate over equality are given careful consideration: the distinction between 'telic' and 'deontic' egalitarianism; prioritarianism and the so-called 'levelling down objection' to egalitarianism; whether egalitarian justice should have 'whole lives' or some subset thereof as its temporal focus; the implications of Scanlon's contractualist account of the value of choice for egalitarian justice; and the question of whether non-human animals fall within the scope of egalitarianism and if so, what the implications are.
Numerous 'classic' issues receive a new treatment too: how egalitarianism can be justified and how, if at all, this value should be combined with other values such as desert, liberty and sufficiency; how to define the 'worst off' for the purposes of Rawls' difference principle; Elizabeth Anderson's feminist account of 'equality of relations'; how equality applies to risky choices and, in particular, whether it is justifiable to restrict the freedom of suppliers who wish to release goods that confer different levels of risk on consumers, depending on their ability to pay. Finally, the implications of egalitarianism and prioritarianism for health care are scrutinized. The contributors to the volume are: Richard Arneson, Linda Barclay, Thomas Christiano, Nils Holtug, Susan Hurley, Kasper Lippert-Rasmussen, Dennis McKerlie, Ingmar Persson, Bertil Tungodden, Peter Vallentyne, Andrew Williams, and Jonathan Wolff.