Aristotle's Definition Of Justice In Justice

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Müge Neda Altınoklu Şenay 24 Mart 2016 Dilemma of Justice Equity rather than equality? The ancient concept of justice is fundamentally different from its modern meaning. In modern times, although the institutional meaning of justice means to judge crimes or to resolve conflicts between individuals according to the laws, and although in a less institutional sense, we speak of justice in a sense of social justice that assume the fair distribution of economic wealth, power, rights and duties in society, justice in antiquity was highly different from its modern meaning and first thought as a virtue that provide harmony within the ideal state. Ancient philosophers such as Plato and Aristotle dealt with the question of justice and linked it to…show more content…
Similar to Plato, Aristotle considered also justice as a virtue yet contrary to Plato, he thought that justice is not in the soul, but in the actions. Aristotle emphasizes also the relational and reciprocal character of justice and stated that justice can be exercised only in relation to other individuals (NE, 1129b30). Aristotle distinguishes justice between general justice and particular justice. He describes general justice within the compliance to given laws. While general justice interests in whether an action is lawful or unlawful, particular justice interests in whether an action what is fair or not. He distinguishes also particular justice in two parties. According to him, distributive justice is concerned generally with distribution of honors or wealth divided among citizens depending on their deserving degrees and retributive justice which is concerned with the rectification in transactions (NE, 1130b30-1131a). In the distributive justice, Aristotle propose that the distribution will be equal between equals and unequal between unequals. In Politics, Aristotle states that “now all men believe that justice means equality in some sense, and they are in limited agreement with the philosophy of justice which I explained in my Ethics: they hold that justice is some entity which is relative to persons and that equality must be equal for equals” (Politics, I282bi4). Similar to Plato, this kind of justice implied a proportional and conditional equality. We have already agreed beforehand that this kind of justice requires an unequal structured society. The exchange in aristotelian sense, is the main determinant of justice distributive. It means that citizens will obtain goods in return to their services. So in the distribution justice, Aristotle propose a geometrical proportion, while in retributive justice seeks for the fair

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