Basic Human Interests
The natural duty of justice describes a duty we all have towards each other, irrespective of any interactions or special relations. But how can we determine the content of this duty? What exactly is it that we all owe each other? As noted in section 1.2, Allen Buchanan conceives of the natural duty of justice as ‘the limited moral obligation to contribute to ensuring that all persons have access to just institutions, where this means primarily institutions that protect basic human rights’ (Buchanan 2004, 86). While this understanding of the natural duty of justice centers around basic human rights, Buchanan further emphasizes that what ultimately matters morally are not these rights, but the interests which they protect (Buchanan 2004, 127). Drawing on this understanding of the natural duty of justice, in this chapter I begin to specify the standard of minimal justice that informs this duty by developing a systematic account of basic human interests.
KeywordsGood Life Physical Integrity Capability Approach Individual Autonomy Moral Duty
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