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Property and Justice$
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J. W. Harris

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780199251407

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199251407.001.0001

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Property is Just, to a Degree, Sometimes

Property is Just, to a Degree, Sometimes

(p.362) 18 Property is Just, to a Degree, Sometimes
Property and Justice


Oxford University Press

This chapter argues that a judgement about the relative justice or injustice of a particular property institution, taken as a whole, must be addressed to the total package of privileges, powers, rights, obligations, liabilities, and immunities to which its gives rise, set in the social context in which it obtains. A conclusion that no property institution of any kind could be justified would entail that obligations imposed by trespassory rules are never genuine moral obligations and that claims to exercise ownership privileges and powers are never morally sound.

Keywords:   moral obligations, property institutions, justice, ownership

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