Social Science Pls, go through the file named study guide. I have detailed what needs to be done and provided links to the relevant readings which must be

Social Science Pls, go through the file named study guide. I have detailed what needs to be done and provided links to the relevant readings which must be

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Social Science Pls, go through the file named study guide. I have detailed what needs to be done and provided links to the relevant readings which must be used in answering the questions. I am also attaching the slides for the lectures I have referenced which should also be used. Current Social Science
Themes and Issues
Towards ‘social justice’
SOSC 1000 6.0
Lecture 22/2
Jan Krouzil PhD
August 5, 2021

PART I Characterising ‘social justice’
PART II ‘Bivalent’ conception of ‘social justice’
PART III ‘Social justice’ – a post-modern ‘quasi-religious’ phenomenon?

Characterising ‘social justice’ (1)

What does the term ‘social justice’ refer to?
society at large can create or promote positions or situations that favour some and do disservice to others
concept of ‘social justice’
in the 19th century as criticism against society for allowing or favoring economic differences
meant to seek economic equality
now taken on the idea of preventing or reducing ‘wrongs’
provoked by machismo, racism, xenophobia and homophobia (among others)
at times consists of promoting equality
at other times more at recognizing the difference

Characterising ‘social justice’ (2)
expound a general concept of ‘social justice’
based upon philosophy, social sciences and political theory
as a result of cross-cultural and interdisciplinary dialogue
faced with very different and even contradictory ways of understanding ‘social justice’
How to understand and approach ‘social justice’?
as a movement ‘social justice’ still under development
approach as an open and dynamic phenomenon
rather than a closed and final concept
identify characteristics and explain by way of a key proposition and by posing questions

Characterising ‘social justice’ (3)
The normative principle – basis for ‘social justice’
upon which standards (moral foundations) develop
something is deemed just or unjust if it agrees with or is against such principles
what ‘causes’ something to be socially unjust?
practice that contradicts the common beliefs formally subscribed to by various groups that all people have equal moral value according to the culture of human rights
given that not all share the same beliefs – difficult to find a normative criterion accepted by all members

Characterising ‘social justice’ (4)
what areas of everyday life involve ‘social justice’?
types of institutions or dimensions
economy, culture and politics
until some decades ago the framework of ‘social justice’ administration (the state-nation) considered the political unit par excellence
the state as the fundamental political framework?
‘social justice’ flexible to diverse frameworks or political units

Characterising ‘social justice’ (5)
fragmented inwardly due to decentralisation processes
local or regional or departmental autonomies created improving the empowerment of the populations (efficiency in justice
overflowed outwardly through globalisation processes
affecting everyday lives of all populations
even those that try to shield themselves by taking economic, cultural and/or political measures of protectionism

Characterising ‘social justice’ (6)
Any viable strategies for solving ‘social justice’ demands?
utilising strategies that oscillate between conservative and radical aspects
keeping in mind morals, process efficiency and results
promote the system of free competition
with the free market (free personal actions) will not be any losers
given that each one will endeavour to achieve and obtain the maximum benefit
property and production systems should be restructured
prioritising the welfare of the community more than that of the individual
common property will ensure the welfare of each of its members

Characterising ‘social justice’ (7)
accepts a compromise between free individual choice and the community
perspective of society
allowing the redistribution of goods and services of the state to some degree
Which option is the best?
not possible to decide a priori the best and most adequate strategy from normative (to be morally correct) practical points of view (to be efficient in practice)
at times a solution could be moral but inefficient or vice versa.
at other times can be simultaneously good for both normative reasons and efficient practices
practical and normative criteria should be kept in mind
according to the specific context and pursuant to the specific society at issue

Characterising ‘social justice’ (8)
Who should decide how to interpret and to implement ‘social justice’?
Key claim
the democratic community
directly affected by unjust practices
different democratic communities (local, national or international)
to be recognised as the authors of justice
legitimacy of the interpretation and implementation of ‘social justice’
to be granted by the political community through democratic procedures
the educator, the ruler, the social activist (or others) as members with specific roles yet none of them has the absolute power to determine what is just

Characterising ‘social justice’ (9)
Does democracy guarantee ‘social justice’?
not infallible – yet can be reviewed and capable of improvement
not a single society (within a global scenario) where all of its citizens are on equal terms for participating democratically
shortcomings of modern democracy
some groups (poor people, women, indigenous people, homosexuals, immigrants, etc.) ‘democratically’ disadvantaged
many of the oppressed groups democratically gaining within democracy

Characterising ‘social justice’ (10)
democracy bears a paradox
can expand or annihilate itself
vehicle for public power pertaining to the citizens
meant to transform any issue including itself
to be ever more participatory and socially just – democratic
society (local, national or global) should be able to critically
reflect upon itself

Part II
‘Bivalent’ conception of ‘social justice’ (1)
Types of claims for ‘social justice’
redistributive claims
seek a more just distribution of resources and goods
ie claims for redistribution from the North to the South, from the rich to the poor
from owners to workers
claim in the ‘politics of recognition’
assimilation to majority or dominant cultural norms is no longer
the price of equal respect
ie claims for the recognition of distinctive perspectives of ethnic, ‘racial,’ and sexual minorities, as well as of gender difference

‘Bivalent’ conception of ‘social justice’ (2)
Discourse of ‘social justice’
once centered on distribution, now divided between claims for redistribution and claims for recognition
two kinds of justice claims dissociated from one another – both practically and intellectually
an either/or choice: redistribution or recognition ?
class politics or identity politics ?
multiculturalism or social equality?
Key argument
‘social justice’ requires both redistribution and recognition (Fraser 1996)
neither alone is sufficient

‘Bivalent’ conception of ‘social justice’ (3)
How to integrate into comprehensive framework?
theoretically – devise a “bivalent” conception of justice
accommodate both defensible claims for social equality and defensible claims for the recognition of difference
practically – programmatic political orientation
integrate the best of politics of redistribution with the best of politics of recognition
Key aspects of contrast
different conceptions of injustice

‘Bivalent’ conception of ‘social justice’ (4)
politics of redistribution
focuses on injustices it defines as socioeconomic
presumes to be rooted in the economic structure of society
exploitation (one’s labor appropriated for the benefit of others)
economic marginalization (being confined to undesirable or poorly paid work)
deprivation (being denied an adequate material standard of living)
politics of recognition
targets injustices it understands as cultural
presumes to be rooted in social patterns of representation, interpretation, and communication
cultural domination (being subjected to patterns of interpretation and communication that are associated with another culture and are alien and/or hostile to one’s own)
nonrecognition (being

‘Bivalent’ conception of ‘social justice’ (5)
different sorts of remedies for injustice
politics of redistribution
economic restructuring
redistributing income
reorganizing the division of labor
democratizing procedures for investment decisions
transforming other basic economic structures
politics of recognition
cultural or symbolic change
upwardly revaluing disrespected identities and the cultural products
recognizing and positively valorizing cultural diversity
transformation of societal patterns of representation, interpretation

‘Bivalent’ conception of ‘social justice’ (6)
different conceptions of the collectivities
politics of redistribution
classes or class-like collectivities defined economically by a distinctive relation to the market or the means of production
politics of recognition
more like status group than classes defined by the relations of recognition
distinguished by the lesser esteem, honor, and prestige relative to other groups
different understandings of group differences
politics of redistribution
treats such differences as unjust differentials
not intrinsic, but socially constructed
point is to abolish, not to recognize

‘Bivalent’ conception of ‘social justice’ (7)
politics of recognition
group differences are pre-existing, benign cultural variations transformed into a value hierarchy
group differences created through a discursive framework of binary oppositions
Which of these two politics to embrace?
politics of redistribution that seeks to redress economic injustices by abolishing class (and class-like) differential?
politics of recognition that seeks to redress cultural injustices precisely by celebrating cultural variations or deconstructing binary oppositions?
‘false antithesis’ (Fraser1996)

‘Bivalent’ conception of ‘social justice’ (8)
Key questions
does ‘social justice’ require the recognition of what is distinctive about individuals or groups over and above the recognition of our common humanity?
how can one conceive redistribution and recognition in such a way as to accommodate both the apparent separation of economy and culture and also their interpenetration?
Toward a conceptual integration
substantive dualism
treats redistribution and recognition as pertaining to two different societal domains

‘Bivalent’ conception of ‘social justice’ (9)
perspectival dualism
treats redistribution and recognition as two different analytical perspectives applied to any social domain
How to think integratively?
by seeking out transformative approaches to redistribution and deconstructive approaches to recognition
‘by looking to integrative approaches that unite redistribution and recognition in the service of participatory parity can requirements of ‘social justice’ for all’ be fulfilled (Fraser 1996)

‘Social justice’ – post-modern ‘quasi-religious’ phenomenon? (1)

Q: can a case be made about whether ‘social justice’ takes the form of
a quasi-religion?
A: takes on many of the qualities of a religion
makes sense in a postmodern context
religious structure that services the same human needs that religions do from within a different paradigm
Ideologically motivated moral communities
what makes moral communities ‘ideologically motivated’?
incorporation of truly, locally, sacrosanct ideas imported from some ideology or faith tradition
formed around a (mostly) shared interpretation of ‘right and wrong’
enforced to some degree by social norms, expectations, and punishments

‘Social justice’ – post-modern ‘quasi-religious’ phenomenon? (2)

Religions as cultural structures
facilitate the satisfaction of various interrelated psychological and social (psychosocial) needs
needs met by religions address problems faced by human beings in meaning making, control, and social identity and community formation and regulation
need to create an attributional framework that explains the world in terms of the ideology
intersectional Matrix of Domination (Patricia Hill Collins)
seeks to explain how privilege and power form a matrix of domination and oppression which is ultimately rooted in assumptions about identity

‘Social justice’ – post-modern ‘quasi-religious’ phenomenon? (3)

teleological framework to explain what the point of life is in the context of the operative mythology or ideology
telos is in remaking society into a utopia
social identity and a need for community
framework through which a person can feel good about her/him
both in terms of how she sees her/himself and being seen by others
community in which that framework makes sense and ‘really exists’ (in a sociocultural sense)
to remake communities in line with its operative vision for the world
nearly all of its work is focused upon the actions, thoughts, and various usages of language within vaguely defined communities
ways of speaking to one another using a distinctive dialect

‘Social justice’ – post-modern ‘quasi-religious’ phenomenon? (4)

‘Social Justice’ institutionalized
arranged so that it can treat its beliefs as ‘knowledge’
universities as institutions for producing and transmitting ‘knowledge’
other institutions, including primary and secondary education and any portions of media, the corporate world, and politics
no claim to ‘knowledge’ possible when epistemological rigor bypassed
knowledge has not just to be true but also to be ‘justified’
‘special revelation’ and morally motivated idea laundering not accepted avenues to justification

‘Social justice’ – post-modern ‘quasi-religious’ phenomenon? (5)

History of human thought – paradigms
pre-modern, modern, post-modern
stance on the approach to knowledge production and social organization as Enlightenment thought
modern paradigm—Enlightenment thought—is skeptical of faith’s capacity to justify ’knowledge’ claims
Enlightenment thought rejects the idea that any ‘knowledge’ is ‘special’
Faith in ‘social justice’
epistemological justification – clear line between faith-based beliefs and ‘knowledge’

‘Social justice’ – post-modern ‘quasi-religious’ phenomenon? (6)

post-modern faith not like premodern faith – still faith
looks to the assurance of things hoped for
on the ‘right side of history’
conviction of things not seen
‘Applied postmodernism’ as a social philosophy
axioms treated as articles of faith (Connor Wood)
‘knowledge’ and ‘truth’ largely socially constructed – not objectively discovered
what is believed to be ‘true’ in large part a function of social power
who wields it, who’s oppressed by it, how it influences which messages are heard
power is generally oppressive, self-interested and implicitly zero-sum

‘Social justice’ – post-modern ‘quasi-religious’ phenomenon? (7)

claims about supposedly objective truth – power plays or strategies for legitimizing particular social arrangements
anti-realist component views ‘objectivity’ as practically unobtainable
concludes that ‘objective reality’ not knowable at all
reality is constructed by and mediated through language
those who hold the power can and do structure language – as ‘discourses’
ways of speaking about things—so that their ‘subjective truths’ treated as the ‘objective truth’
an article of faith in the form of ‘relativism’
professes to believe that there is no reason to privilege any one set of culturally mediated truths over any other
so the truths of any cultural group may be as valid (‘true’) as those of any other
interested in finding ways to forward “other ways of knowing” and the “truths” of oppressed groups
believed to be less recognized only because of a power dynamic of oppression

‘Social justice’ – post-modern ‘quasi-religious’ phenomenon? (8)

‘Social justice’ – a kind of faith system
represents a cultural phenomenon using many of the same means as religion
to address the (nearly) universal underlying human psycho-social needs that people established religions to address
relies on a distinctly (applied) postmodern mythology
fundamentally secular in nature
the ‘separation of church and state’ – a committed prevention of institutionalizing religious doctrines and practice in liberal governments
not technically a religion – a kind of faith system

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