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Volume 26 • Number 1

January 2012




by Omar Dahbour

The publication of Gillian Brock's Global Justice: A Cosmopolitan Account in 2009 and of Richard Miller's Globalizing Justice: The Ethics of Poverty and Power in 2010 have created an important occasion for reassessing the discourse about global justice that has arisen in the last decade. Above all, these books have moved the debate about what constitutes global justice in an exciting new direction by introducing important considerations previously lacking. But most essentially, these books give us an opportunity to assess whether the concept of global justice is amenable, not only to exercises in liberal moral thinking, but also to radical social theorizing about deprivation and powerlessness on the international scale. Is there a new paradigm of radical global justice?

While I will argue that, ultimately, neither author makes a definitive break with the liberal paradigm, this is not so much a result of faintheartedness or failure of imagination as a deficiency with the concept of global justice itself. I think it may turn out, once these exciting new works have been fully digested, that they are actually pointing the way beyond concern for global justice, in any sense of the term currently extant. What may lie "beyond" global justice will be the object of some brief speculations at the end of this essay.

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ISSN: 2152-0542