Egalitarianism

Egalitarianism (from French égal, meaning 'equal'), or equalitarianism,[1][2] is a school of thought that prioritizes equality for all people.[3] Egalitarian doctrines maintain that all humans either should "get the same, or be treated the same" in some respect such as social status.[4] Egalitarianism is a trend of thought in political philosophy. According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, the term has two distinct definitions in modern English,[5] namely either as a political doctrine that all people should be treated as equals and have the same political, economic, social and civil rights,[6] or as a social philosophy advocating the removal of economic inequalities among people, economic egalitarianism, or the decentralization of power. Some sources define egalitarianism as the point of view that equality reflects the natural state of humanity.[7][8][9]

Forms

Some specifically focused egalitarian concerns include communism, legal egalitarianism, luck egalitarianism, political egalitarianism, gender egalitarianism, racial equality, equality of outcome and Christian egalitarianism. Common forms of egalitarianism include political and philosophical.

Legal egalitarianism

One argument is that liberalism provides democratic societies with the means to carry out civic reform by providing a framework for developing public policy and providing the right conditions for individuals to achieve civil rights.[10]

Equality of person

The English Bill of Rights of 1689 and the United States Constitution use only the term person in operative language involving fundamental rights and responsibilities, except for (a) a reference to men in the English Bill of Rights regarding men on trial for treason; and (b) a rule of proportional Congressional representation in the 14th Amendment to the United States Constitution.

As the rest of the Constitution, in its operative language the 14th Amendment to the United States Constitution uses the term person, stating that "nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws".

Equality of men and women in rights and responsibilities

An example of this form is the Tunisian Constitution of 2014 which provides that "men and women shall be equal in their rights and duties".

Gender equality

The motto "Liberté, égalité, fraternité" was used during the French Revolution and is still used as an official motto of the French government. The 1789 Rights of Man and of the Citizen French Constitution is framed also with this basis in equal rights of mankind.

The Declaration of Independence of the United States is an example of an assertion of equality of men as "All men are created equal" and the wording of men and man is a reference to both men and women, i.e. mankind. John Locke is sometimes considered the founder of this form.

Many state constitutions in the United States also use rights of man language rather than rights of person since the noun man has always been a reference to and an inclusion of both men and women.

It is generally accepted by egalitarians that feminism falls under egalitarianism and that some feminists identify themselves as egalitarian which under the broadly understood definition of the word is equality for both men and women.

Social egalitarianism

At a cultural level, egalitarian theories have developed in sophistication and acceptance during the past two hundred years. Among the notable broadly egalitarian philosophies are socialism, communism, social anarchism, libertarian socialism, left-libertarianism and progressivism, some of which propound economic egalitarianism. However, whether any of these ideas have been significantly implemented in practice remains a controversial question. Anti-egalitarianism[11] or elitism[12] is opposition to egalitarianism.

Economic

A very early example of equality of what might be described as outcome economic egalitarianism is the Chinese philosophy of agriculturalism which held that the economic policies of a country need to be based upon an egalitarian self sufficiency.[13]

In socialism, social ownership of means of production is sometimes considered to be a form of economic egalitarianism because in an economy characterized by social ownership the surplus product generated by industry would accrue to the population as a whole as opposed to a class of private owners, thereby granting each individual increased autonomy and greater equality in their relationships with one another. Although the economist Karl Marx is sometimes mistaken to be an egalitarian, Marx eschewed normative theorizing on moral principles altogether. However, Marx did have a theory of the evolution of moral principles in relation to specific economic systems.[14]

The American economist John Roemer has put forth a new perspective of equality and its relationship to socialism. Roemer attempts to reformulate Marxist analysis to accommodate normative principles of distributive justice, shifting the argument for socialism away from purely technical and materialist reasons to one of distributive justice. Roemer argues that according to the principle of distributive justice, the traditional definition of socialism based on the principle that individual compensation be proportional to the value of the labour one expends in production is inadequate. Roemer concludes that egalitarians must reject socialism as it is classically defined in order for equality to be realized.[15]

Egalitarianism and non-human animals

Many philosophers, including Ingmar Persson,[16] Peter Vallentyne,[17] Nils Holtug[18] and Lewis Gompertz,[19] have argued that egalitarianism implies that the interests of non-human animals must be taken into account as well. Philosopher Oscar Horta has further argued that "[e]galitarianism implies rejecting speciesism, and in practice it prescribes ceasing to exploit nonhuman animals" and that we should aid animals suffering in nature.[20] Furthermore, Horta argues that "because [nonhuman animals] are worse off in comparison to humans, egalitarianism prescribes giving priority to the interests of nonhuman animals".[20]

Religious and spiritual egalitarianism

Sikhism

The Sikh faith was founded upon egalitarian principles, reaffirming the notion of equality not only based upon race, but also between the genders. This equality led to denunciation of sati, the practice of widows sacrificing themselves on the funeral pyres of deceased husband, but which actually occurred due to the wives of warriors preferring to commit self-immolation over becoming the bounty of war for the Central Asians that were waging wars in India and Afghanistan during the early Ghazni wars. The scriptural injunction is often ascribed as providing women in the Sikh faith equal rights to practice their faith and be regarded as created equal in the eyes of God. Whilst the noble premise to strive for egalitarianism, many Sikhs still practice strong tribal casteism, with greater rigidity than the Hindu archetype from which the practice was inherited.[21] Despite the rhetoric of equality, scholars have "found contradictions in the Sikh rhetoric of equality and widespread discrimination against Sikh's of low castes".[21] Furthermore, despite many Sikh scholars decreeing the egalitarian tenets of Sikhism denouncing sexism, female infanticide, dowry, sati or the condemning of widows to a life of solitude and isolation—the reality is these practices have remained prevalent whilst they have long fallen out of favour with the other ethnocultural religious groups in the Indian continent, like Hindus, Buddhists and Jains.[22]

Christianity

The Christian egalitarian view holds that the Bible teaches the fundamental equality of people of all racial and ethnic mixes, all economic classes and all age groups, but within the teachings and example of Jesus Christ, God and the overarching principles of scripture.[23]

Within the wide range of Christianity there are dissenting views to this from opposing groups, some of which are complementarians. There are many that say that the Bible encourages equality and also encourages law and order and social structure (for example, parents having authority over their children and husbands authority over their wives). These ideas are considered by some to be contrary to the ideals of egalitarianism.

Judaism

Judaism is a universalist religion due to the belief that one God created the entire universe. A further distinction has to be made however. Judaism teaches that Jews (defined as either the biological descendants of Jacob "Israel", the son of Isaac and grandson of Abraham or someone who converted) have a specific covenant with God as a chosen people (Deutoronomy 7:6 "chosen as God's treasured people") to serve as an example of God's light to the rest of the world. The oral Torah and Rabbinic literature codified in the Talmud makes key distinctions in religious and legal contexts between Jews and the gentiles (meaning literally "the nations"). However, Judaism teaches that all people are the creations of God and are commanded in the seven universal moral laws known as the Seven Laws of Noah. In this aspect, Judaism is universalist in its divine message, but not in its religious obligations. In reform and conservative Judaism, egalitarian refers to nullification of religious gender separations. Synagogues that identify as egalitarian allow mixed seating (i.e. no mechitza) and allow women to lead services with men in attendance as well as read publicly from the Torah.

Islam

The Quran states: "O mankind, indeed We have created you from male and female and made you peoples and tribes that you may know one another. Indeed, the most noble of you in the sight of Allah is the most righteous of you. Indeed, Allah is Knowing and Acquainted". Muhammad echoed these egalitarian sentiments, sentiments which clashed with the practices of the pre-Islamic cultures. In a review of Louise Marlow's Hierarchy and Egalitarianism in Islamic Thought Ismail Poonawala wrote: "With the establishment of the Arab-Muslim Empire, however, this egalitarian notion, as well as other ideals, such as social justice and social service, that is, alleviating suffering and helping the needy, which constituted an integral part of the Islamic teaching, slowly receded into the background. The explanation given for this change generally reiterates the fact that the main concern of the ruling authorities became the consolidation of their own power and the administration of the slate rather than upholding and implementing those Islamic ideals nurtured by the Qur'an and the Prophet".[24]

Modern egalitarianism theory

Modern egalitarianism is a theory that rejects the classic definition of egalitarianism as a possible achievement economically, politically and socially. Modern egalitarianism theory, or new egalitarianism, outlines that if everyone had the same opportunity cost, then there would be no comparative advances and no one would gain from trading with each other. In essence, the immense gains people receive from trading with each other arise because they are unequal in characteristics and talents—these differences may be innate or developed so that people can gain from trading with each other.[25]

Reception

The cultural theory of risk holds egalitarianism as defined by (1) a negative attitude towards rules and principles; and (2) a positive attitude towards group decision-making, with fatalism termed as its opposite.[26] The theory distinguishes between hierarchists, who are positive towards both rules and groups; and egalitarianists, who are positive towards groups, but negative towards rules.[26] This is by definition a form of anarchist equality as referred to by Alexander Berkman. Thus, the fabric of an egalitarianist society is held together by cooperation and implicit peer pressure rather than by explicit rules and punishment. However, Thompson et al. theorise that any society consisting of only one perspective, be it egalitarianist, hierarchist, individualist, fatalist or autonomist, will be inherently unstable as the claim is that an interplay between all these perspectives are required if each perspective is to be fulfilling. For instance, although an individualist according to cultural theory is aversive towards both principles and groups, individualism is not fulfilling if individual brilliance cannot be recognised by groups, or if individual brilliance cannot be made permanent in the form of principles.[26] Accordingly, egalitarianists have no power except through their presence, unless they (by definition, reluctantly) embrace principles which enable them to cooperate with fatalists and hierarchists. They will also have no individual sense of direction in the absence of a group. This could be mitigated by following individuals outside their group, namely autonomists or individualists.

Berkman suggests that "equality does not mean an equal amount but equal opportunity [...] Do not make the mistake of identifying equality in liberty with the forced equality of the convict camp. True anarchist equality implies freedom, not quantity. It does not mean that every one must eat, drink, or wear the same things, do the same work, or live in the same manner. Far from it: the very reverse in fact [...] Individual needs and tastes differ, as appetites differ. It is equal opportunity to satisfy them that constitutes true equality [...] Far from levelling, such equality opens the door for the greatest possible variety of activity and development. For human character is diverse".[27]

Marxism

Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels believed that an international proletarian revolution would bring about a socialist society which would then eventually give way to a communist stage of social development which would be a classless, stateless, moneyless, humane society erected on common ownership of the means of production and the principle of "From each according to their ability, to each according to their needs". However, Marxism rejected egalitarianism in the sense of greater equality between classes, clearly distinguishing it from the socialist notion of the abolition of classes based on the division between workers and owners of productive property. Marx's view of classlessness was not the subordination of society to a universal interest (such as a universal notion of equality), but it was about the creation of the conditions that would enable individuals to pursue their true interests and desires, making Marx's notion of communist society radically individualistic.[28]

Instead, Marx was a proponent of two principles, with the first ("To each according to his contribution") being applied to socialism and the second ("To each according to their needs") to an advanced communist society. Although Marx's position is often confused or conflated with distributive egalitarianism in which only the goods and services resulting from production are distributed according to a notional equality, in reality Marx eschewed the entire concept of equality as abstract and bourgeois in nature, preferring to focus on more concrete principles such as opposition to exploitation on materialist grounds and economic logic.[29]

See also

References

  1. ^ "Definition of equalitarianism". The Free Dictionary. Houghton Mifflin Company. 2009.
  2. ^ "equalitarianism". Dictionary.com Unabridged. Random House. Retrieved 7 May 2018.
  3. ^ "egalitarian". Dictionary.com Unabridged. Random House. Retrieved 7 May 2018.
  4. ^ Arneson, Richard (2002). [http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/egalitarianism "Egalitarianism". Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
  5. ^ "Egalitarianism". Merriam-Webster Dictionary.
  6. ^ "Wgalitarianism". American Heritage Dictionary. 2003.
  7. ^ Gowdy, John (1998). Limited Wants, Unlimited Means: A reader on Hunter-Gatherer Economics and the Environment. St Louis: Island Press. p. 342. ISBN 978-1-55963-555-4.
  8. ^ Dahlberg, Frances (1975). Woman the Gatherer. London: Yale university press. ISBN 978-0-300-02989-5.
  9. ^ Erdal, D.; Whiten, A. (1996). "Egalitarianism and Machiavellian Intelligence in Human Evolution" in Mellars, P.; Gibson, K. (eds.). Modeling the Early Human Mind. Cambridge MacDonald Monograph Series.
  10. ^ Rosales, José María. "Liberalism, Civic Reformism and Democracy". 20th World Contress on Philosophy: Political Philosophy. 12 March 2010.
  11. ^ Sidanius, Jim, et al. "Social dominance orientation, anti‐egalitarianism and the political psychology of gender: an extension and cross‐cultural replication." European Journal of Social Psychology 30.1 (2000): 41-67.
  12. ^ "Antonyms for egalitarian". English Thesaurus. Retrieved 28 September 2018.
  13. ^ Denecke, Wiebke (2011). The Dynamics of Masters Literature: Early Chinese Thought from Confucius to Han Feizi. Harvard University Press. p. 38.
  14. ^ "Egalitarianism". Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. 16 August 2002. Retrieved 20 November 2013.
  15. ^ Socialism vs Social Democracy as Income-Equalizing Institutions, by Roemer, John. 2008. Eastern Economic Journal, vol. 34, issue 1, pp. 14–26.
  16. ^ Persson, I. (1993) “A basis for (interspecies) equality”, in Cavalieri, P. & Singer, P. (eds.) The Great Ape Project, New York: St. Martin’s Press, pp. 183-193.
  17. ^ Vallentyne, P. (2005) “Of mice and men: Equality and animals”, Journal of Ethics, 9, pp. 403-433.
  18. ^ Holtug, N. (2007) “Equality for animals,” in Ryberg, J.; Petersen, T. S. & Wolf, C. (eds.) New waves in applied ethics, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 1-24.
  19. ^ Gompertz, L. (1997 [1824]) Moral inquiries on the situation of man and of brutes, London: Open Gate.
  20. ^ a b Horta, Oscar (2014) "Egalitarianism and Animals," Between the Species: Vol. 19: Iss. 1, Article 5. Available at: http://digitalcommons.calpoly.edu/bts/vol19/iss1/5
  21. ^ a b Darshan, S. T. "7 Sikhism and development: a perfect match?." Handbook of Research on Development and Religion (2013): 97.
  22. ^ Singh, I. J. "What sikhism says about gender and sex." International Sikh Conferences. 2004.
  23. ^ Stagg, Evelyn and Frank. Woman in the World of Jesus. Philadelphia: Westminster Press, 1978. ISBN 0-664-24195-6
  24. ^ Poonawala, Ismail (Summer 1999). "Reviewed Work: Hierarchy and Egalitarianism in Islamic Thought by Louise Marlow". Iranian Studies. 32 (3): 405–407. JSTOR 4311272.
  25. ^ Whaples, Robert M. (2017). "Egalitarianism:Fair and Equal? New Thinking on Egalitarianism" (PDF). The Independent Review. Archived from the original on 2017. Retrieved 26 October 2017.
  26. ^ a b c Thompson et al., Cultural Theory (1990)
  27. ^ Alexander Berkman What is Anarchism? pp. 164–165.
  28. ^ Woods, Allen (2014). "Karl Marx on Equality". "Marx thinks the idea of equality is actually a vehicle for bourgeois class oppression, and something quite different from the communist goal of the abolition of classes. [...] A society that has transcended class antagonisms, therefore, would not be one in which some truly universal interest at last reigns, to which individual interests must be sacrificed. It would instead be a society in which individuals freely act as the truly human individuals they are. Marx's radical communism was, in this way, also radically individualistic".
  29. ^ Nielsen, Kai (August 1987). "Rejecting Egalitarianism". Political Theory (15: 3). pp. 411–423.

External links

Agriculturalism

Agriculturalism, also known as the School of Agrarianism, the School of Agronomists, the School of Tillers, and in Chinese as the Nongjia (農家/农家), was an early agrarian Chinese philosophy that advocated peasant utopian communalism and egalitarianism, and was arguably the world's first Communist and Socialist movement that believed in a Classless society. The Agriculturalists believed that Chinese society should be modeled around that of the early sage king Shennong, a folk hero who was portrayed in Chinese literature as "working in the fields, along with everyone else, and consulting with everyone else when any decision had to be reached." They encouraged farming and agriculture and taught farming and cultivation techniques, as they believed that agricultural development was the key to a stable and prosperous society.

Agriculturalism was suppressed during the Qin Dynasty and most original texts are now lost.

However, concepts originally associated with Agriculturalism have influenced Confucianism, Legalism, and Chinese philosophy as a whole. Agriculturalism has significantly influenced Chinese thought, and has been viewed as an essence of the Chinese identity.

All men are created equal

The quotation "All men are created equal" has been called an "immortal declaration," and "perhaps [the] single phrase" of the American Revolutionary period with the greatest "continuing importance." Thomas Jefferson first used the phrase in the U.S. Declaration of Independence, which he penned in 1776 during the beginning of the American Revolution. It was thereafter quoted and incorporated into speeches by a wide array of substantial figures in American political and social life in the United States. The final form of the phrase was stylized by Benjamin Franklin.

Chavurah

A chavurah or havurah (חבורה Hebrew: "fellowship", plural chavurot) is a small group of like-minded Jews who assemble for the purposes of facilitating Shabbat and holiday prayer services, sharing communal experiences such as lifecycle events, or Jewish learning. Chavurot usually provide autonomous alternatives to established Jewish institutions and Jewish denominations. Most chavurot place an emphasis on egalitarianism in the broad sense (of which gender egalitarianism is one piece), depending on participation by the entire community rather than top-down direction by clergy.

Christian egalitarianism

Christian egalitarianism (derived from the French word égal, meaning equal or level), also known as biblical equality, is egalitarianism based in Christianity. In theological spheres, egalitarianism generally means equality in authority and responsibilities between genders, in contrast to complementarianism. This entails women being able to exercise spiritual authority as clergy. Christian egalitarians argue that verses cited to justify certain restrictions on women have been misunderstood, and support "mutual submission" of all people to each other in relationships and human institutions as a form of respect without necessarily requiring a hierarchy in authority.

Culture of Australia

The culture of Australia is primarily a Western culture, to some extent derived from Britain but also influenced by the unique geography of Australia, the cultural input of Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander and other Australian people. The British colonization of Australia began in 1788, and waves of multi-ethnic migration followed. Evidence of a significant Anglo-Celtic heritage includes the predominance of the English language, the existence of a democratic system of government drawing upon the British traditions of Westminster Government, Parliamentarianism and constitutional monarchy, American constitutionalist and federalist traditions, Christianity as the dominant religion, and the popularity of sports originating in (or influenced by) the British Isles. Australian culture has diverged significantly since British settlement.

Aboriginal people are believed to have arrived as early as 60,000 years ago, and evidence of Aboriginal art in Australia dates back at least 30,000 years. Several states and territories had their origins as penal colonies, with the first British convicts arriving at Sydney Cove in 1788. Stories of outlaws like the bushranger Ned Kelly have endured in Australian music, cinema and literature. The Australian gold rushes from the 1850s brought wealth as well as new social tensions to Australia, including the miners' Eureka Stockade rebellion. The colonies established elected parliaments and rights for workers and women before most other Western nations.Federation in 1901 evidenced a growing sense of national identity that had developed over the latter half of the 19th century, as seen in the works of the Heidelberg School painters and writers like Banjo Paterson, Henry Lawson and Dorothea Mackellar. The World Wars profoundly altered Australia's sense of identity, with World War I introducing the ANZAC legend, and World War II seeing a reorientation from Britain to the United States as the nation's foremost major ally. After the second war, 6.5 million migrants from 200 nations brought immense new diversity, and Australians at the time grew increasingly aware of their proximity to Asia. Over time, the diverse food, lifestyle and cultural practices of immigrants have been absorbed into mainstream Australian culture.

Dignity of labour

The dignity of labour is the philosophy that all types of jobs are respected equally, and no occupation is considered superior and none of the jobs should be discriminated on any basis . Though one's occupation for his or her livelihood involves physical work or mental labour, it is held that the job carries dignity compared to the jobs that involve more intellect than body. Social reformers such as Basava and his contemporary Sharanas, as well as Mahatma Gandhi, were prominent advocates of the dignity of labour.The Dignity of Labour is one of the major themes in the Christian ethics, and as such, it is upheld by the Anglican Communion, in Catholic social teaching, in Methodist principles, and in Reformed theology. In Roman Catholicism, usually titled "The Dignity of work and the rights of workers" the affirmation of the Dignity of Human Labour is found in several Papal encyclicals, most notably Pope John Paul II's Laborem Exercens published September 15, 1981. In simple, any form of work manual or intellectual is called labour and respecting any kind of job (manual or intellectual) is called "dignity of labour"

Egalitarian community

Egalitarian communities are groups of people who have chosen to live together, with egalitarianism as one of their core values. A broad definition of egalitarianism is "equal access to resources and to decision-making power." For example, decision-making is done by consensus or another system in which each person has a voice; it is not done hierarchically with only one or a few people making choices that will affect the whole group. If the group shares assets (income, vehicles, etc.), they are distributed equitably throughout the group, and each member has access to more-or-less the same resources as any other member. Egalitarian communities are a type of commune (some communal groups are not egalitarian in nature).

An "egalitarian decision" is a decision made by a group as opposed to a single individual. The decision may be made by committee or elected members but still is an egalitarian decision.

The Federation of Egalitarian Communities is a network of communal groups in North America with values including egalitarianism, non-violence, income-sharing and cooperation.

Egalitarianism as a Revolt Against Nature and Other Essays

Egalitarianism as a Revolt Against Nature and Other Essays is a 1974 book by economist Murray Rothbard. The book represents the author's theorizing on topics impacting human liberty. Rothbard looks beyond conventional left-right thinking and hence contributes to the groundwork for the current intellectual challenge against centralized social and economic management.

The book's title comes from the lead essay, which argues that egalitarian theory always results in a politics of statist control because it is founded on revolt against the ontological structure of reality itself. According to Rothbard in this lead essay, statist intellectuals attempt to replace what exists with a Romantic image of an idealized primitive state of nature, an ideal which cannot and should not be achieved, according to Rothbard. The implications of this point are worked out on topics such as market economics, child rights, environmentalism, feminism, foreign policy, redistribution and others.

Roy Childs writes in the Foreword:

For until Rothbard's work is carefully studied by every advocate of liberty, the value of his contributions to the libertarian system cannot be fully appreciated and, moreover, the unity and true historical context of libertarianism will not even be fully grasped.

Elitism

Elitism is the belief or attitude that individuals who form an elite—a select group of people with a certain ancestry, intrinsic quality, high intellect, wealth, special skills, or experience—are more likely to be constructive to society as a whole, and therefore deserve influence or authority greater than that of others.Alternatively, the term elitism may be used to describe a situation in which power is concentrated in the hands of a limited number of people. Oppositions of elitism include anti-elitism, egalitarianism, populism and political theory of pluralism.

Elite theory is the sociological or political science analysis of elite influence in society: elite theorists regard pluralism as a utopian ideal. Elitism is closely related to social class and what sociologists call social stratification, which in the Anglo Saxon tradition have long been anchored in the "blue blood" claims of hereditary nobility. Members of the upper classes are sometimes known as the social elite. The term elitism is also sometimes used to denote situations in which a group of people claiming to possess high abilities or simply an in-group or cadre grant themselves extra privileges at the expense of others. This form of elitism may be described as discrimination.

Empowerment

The term empowerment refers to measures designed to increase the degree of autonomy and self-determination in people and in communities in order to enable them to represent their interests in a responsible and self-determined way, acting on their own authority. It is the process of becoming stronger and more confident, especially in controlling one's life and claiming one's rights. Empowerment as action refers both to the process of self-empowerment and to professional support of people, which enables them to overcome their sense of powerlessness and lack of influence, and to recognize and use their resources. To do work with power.

The term empowerment originates from American community psychology and is associated with the social scientist Julian Rappaport (1981). However, the roots of empowerment theory extend further into history and are linked to Marxist sociological theory. These sociological ideas have continued to be developed and refined through Neo-Marxist Theory (also known as Critical Theory).In social work, empowerment forms a practical approach of resource-oriented intervention. In the field of citizenship education and democratic education, empowerment is seen as a tool to increase the responsibility of the citizen. Empowerment is a key concept in the discourse on promoting civic engagement. Empowerment as a concept, which is characterized by a move away from a deficit-oriented towards a more strength-oriented perception, can increasingly be found in management concepts, as well as in the areas of continuing education and self-help.

Equality before the law

Equality before the law, also known as equality under the law, equality in the eyes of the law, legal equality, or legal egalitarianism, is the principle that each independent being must be treated equally by the law (principle of isonomy) and that all are subject to the same laws of justice (due process). Therefore, the law must guarantee that no individual nor group of individuals be privileged or discriminated against by the government. Equality before the law is one of the basic principles of liberalism. This principle arises from various important and complex questions concerning equality, fairness and justice. Thus, the principle of equality before the law is incompatible and ceases to exist with legal systems such as slavery, servitude, colonialism, or monarchy.Article 7 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) states: "All are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to equal protection of the law". Thus, everyone must be treated equally under the law regardless of race, gender, national origin, color, ethnicity, religion, disability, or other characteristics, without privilege, discrimination or bias. The general guarantee of equality is provided by most of the world's national constitutions, but specific implementations of this guarantee vary. For example, while many constitutions guarantee equality regardless of race, only a few mention the right to equality regardless of nationality.

Equality feminism

Equality feminism is a subset of the overall feminism movement that focuses on the basic similarities between men and women, and whose ultimate goal is the equality of the sexes in all domains. This includes economic and political equality, equal access within the workplace, freedom from oppressive gender stereotyping, and an androgynous worldview.Feminist theory seeks to promote the legal status of women as equal and undifferentiated from that of men. While equality feminists largely agree that men and women have basic biological differences in anatomy and frame, they argue that on a psychological level, the use of ration or reason is androgynous. For equality feminists, men and women are equal in terms of their ability to reason, achieve goals, and prosper in both the work and home front.Equality feminism was the dominant version of feminism following Mary Wollstonecraft's "A Vindication of the Rights of Woman" (1792). Wollstonecraft made the case that women's equality to men manifests itself in education and worker's rights, and further produced a proverbial roadmap in order for future women to follow in terms of activism and feminist theorizing. Since then, active equality feminist include Simone de Beauvoir, the Seneca Falls Convention Leaders, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Lucretia Coffin Mott, Susan B. Anthony, Betty Friedan, and Gloria Steinem.

While equality feminism was the dominant perspective of feminism during the 19th and 20th century, the 1980s and 1990s brought about a new focus in popular feminism on difference feminism, or the essential differences between men and women. In opposition to equality feminism, this view advocates for the celebration of the "feminine" by focusing on traditionally viewed female traits, such as empathy, nurturing, and care. While equality feminists view human nature as essentially androgynous, difference feminists claim that this viewpoint aligns the "good" with male-dominated stereotypes, thus sticking within the patriarchal framework of society.

Gender equality

Gender equality, also known as sexual equality or equality of the sexes, is the state of equal ease of access to resources and opportunities regardless of gender, including economic participation and decision-making; and the state of valuing different behaviors, aspirations and needs equally, regardless of gender.

To avoid complication, other genders (besides women and men) will not be treated in this Gender equality article.

Gender equality, equality between men and women, entails the concept that all human beings, both men and women, are free to develop their personal abilities and make choices without the limitations set by stereotypes, rigid gender roles and prejudices. Gender equality means that the different behaviour, aspirations and needs of women and men are considered, valued and favoured equally. It does not mean that women and men have to become the same, but that their rights, responsibilities and opportunities will not depend on whether they are born male or female. Gender equity means fairness of treatment for women and men, according to their respective needs. This may include equal treatment or treatment that is different but which is considered equivalent in terms of rights, benefits, obligations and opportunities.

Gender equality is the goal, while gender neutrality and gender equity are practices and ways of thinking that help in achieving the goal. Gender parity, which is used to measure gender balance in a given situation, can aid in achieving gender equality but is not the goal in and of itself. Gender equality is more than equal representation, it is strongly tied to women's rights, and often requires policy changes. As of 2017, the global movement for gender equality has not incorporated the proposition of genders besides women and men, or gender identities outside of the gender binary.

UNICEF says gender equality "means that women and men, and girls and boys, enjoy the same rights, resources, opportunities and protections. It does not require that girls and boys, or women and men, be the same, or that they be treated exactly alike."On a global scale, achieving gender equality also requires eliminating harmful practices against women and girls, including sex trafficking, femicide, wartime sexual violence, and other oppression tactics. UNFPA stated that, "despite many international agreements affirming their human rights, women are still much more likely than men to be poor and illiterate. They have less access to property ownership, credit, training and employment. They are far less likely than men to be politically active and far more likely to be victims of domestic violence."As of 2017, gender equality is the fifth of seventeen sustainable development goals of the United Nations. Gender inequality is measured annually by the United Nations Development Programme's Human Development Reports.

Harrison Bergeron

"Harrison Bergeron" is a satirical and dystopian science-fiction short story by American writer Kurt Vonnegut, first published in October 1961. Originally published in The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, the story was republished in the author's Welcome to the Monkey House collection in 1968.

Justice as Fairness

"Justice as Fairness: Political not Metaphysical" is an essay by John Rawls, published in 1985. In it he describes his conception of justice. It comprises two main principles of liberty and equality; the second is subdivided into Fair Equality of Opportunity and the Difference Principle.

Rawls arranges the principles in 'lexical priority', prioritising in the order of the Liberty Principle, Fair Equality of Opportunity and the Difference Principle. This order determines the priorities of the principles if they conflict in practice. The principles are, however, intended as a single, comprehensive conception of justice—'Justice as Fairness'—and not to function individually. These principles are always applied so as to ensure that the "least advantaged" are benefitted and not hurt or forgotten.

Rawls originally presented the theory in his 1971 book A Theory of Justice, subsequently expanding upon several of its themes in his later book titled Political Liberalism.

Luck egalitarianism

Luck egalitarianism is a view about distributive justice espoused by a variety of egalitarian and other political philosophers. According to this view, justice demands that variations in how well off people are should be wholly determined by the responsible choices people make and not to differences in their unchosen circumstances. This expresses the intuition that it is a bad thing for some people to be worse off than others through no fault of their own.

Political egalitarianism

Political egalitarianism is where members of a society are of equal standing in terms of political power or influence. A founding principle of various forms of democracy, political egalitarianism was an idea which was supported by Thomas Jefferson and it is a concept similar to moral reciprocity and legal equality. The idea suggests all citizens of a certain country must be treated equally solely depending on their citizenship status, not on their race, gender, religion and how clever or how rich they are. Equal citizenship constitute the core of political egalitarianism. This is expressed in such principles as one-person/one-vote, equality before the law and equal rights of free speech.

Racial equality

Racial equality occurs when institutions give equal opportunity to people of all races. In other words, institutions ignore persons' racial physical traits or skin color, and give everyone legally, morally, and politically equal opportunity. In Western society today, there is more diversity and more integration among races. Initially, attaining equality has been difficult for African, Asian, and Latino people, especially in schools. However, in the United States, racial equality, has become a law that regardless of what race an individual is, they will receive equal treatment, opportunity, education, employment, and politics.

Social equality

Social equality is a state of affairs in which all people within a specific society or isolated group have the same status in certain respects, including civil rights, freedom of speech, property rights and equal access to certain social goods and services. However, it also includes concepts of health equality, economic equality and other social securities. It also includes equal opportunities and obligations, and so involves the whole of society. Social equality requires the absence of legally enforced social class or caste boundaries and the absence of discrimination motivated by an inalienable part of a person's identity. For example, sex, gender, race, age, sexual orientation, origin, caste or class, income or property, language, religion, convictions, opinions, health or disability must absolutely not result in unequal treatment under the law and should not reduce opportunities unjustifiably.

Equal opportunities is interpreted as being judged by ability, which is compatible with a free-market economy. Relevant problems are horizontal inequality − the inequality of two persons of same origin and ability and differing opportunities given to individuals − such as in (education) or by inherited capital.

Conceivements of social equality may vary per philosophy and individual and other than egalitarianism it does not necessarily require all social inequalities to be eliminated by artificial means but instead often recognizes and respects natural differences between people.

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