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Oxford Studies in Political Philosophy, Volume 2$
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David Sobel, Peter Vallentyne, and Steven Wall

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780198759621

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198759621.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 21 September 2021

Is the Gendered Division of Labor a Problem of Distribution?

Is the Gendered Division of Labor a Problem of Distribution?

(p.185) 7 Is the Gendered Division of Labor a Problem of Distribution?
Oxford Studies in Political Philosophy, Volume 2

Gina Schouten

Oxford University Press

This chapter addresses the legitimacy (roughly, the permissibility of using collective political power or force) of political interventions to change the gendered division of labor (of, for example, unpaid housework and childcare). Interventions such as work time regulation, subsidized dependent care provisions, and paid family leave initiatives are promising approaches, but they appear to violate a basic liberal requirement that exercises of political power be publicly defensible within the justificatory community of reasonable citizens. This in turn requires that the intervention must be neutral among the conceptions of the good that citizens may reasonably embrace. Although the author believes that gender egalitarian interventions can be so neutral and egitimate, the chapter argues against the view that they can be neutrally justified as a necessary means to remedy unjust distributions.

Keywords:   legitimacy, justice, gendered division of labor, neutrality, public justification

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