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The Ajax DilemmaJustice, Fairness, and Rewards$
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Paul Woodruff

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199768615

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:osobl/9780199768615.001.0001

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(p.110) Fairness
The Ajax Dilemma

Paul Woodruff

Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses the three main features of fairness—equality, agreement, and transparency—and how they relate to the case of Ajax. Equality is the first goal of fairness. If possible, fairness treats everyone the same way. In the Ajax case, equality is beyond reach. For one thing, even if the two contestants are judged equal, there is only one suit of armor to hand out. For another, even if there were two suits of armor, the same prize cannot be given to both candidates because there can only be one top honor, only one best soldier. Agreement, the second goal, comes in when equality fails while the transparency of fairness allows anyone to predict accurately what results to expect.

Keywords:   fairness, equality, agreement, transparency

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