By John Rees (auth.)
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Extra info for Equality
This is not altogether surprising, for the Marxist's emphasis on the ownership of wealth and his relative lack of concern with other forms of inequality derive from the central place accorded in the Marxist theory of class to the ownership of the instruments of productionP And herein lies an important difference in principle on the approach to the study of social inequality and the phenomenon of class in modern sociology. I wish here to enter a reservation about the degree to which the dis- · tribution of incomes and wealth can be altered, since I could well be understood to be claiming that the question of redistribution is a simple one, merely a matter of having the desire to use well-known and tried egalitarian devices.
Is it not an integral part ofliberal-democratic theory that all points of view have a right to be heard? And, taken negatively, the proposal could be directed at the relative lack of time in television broadcasts accorded to the minority parties in Britain (as well as in America), over which there has been much complaint in recent years, or the disproportionate bias in favour of the Conservative Party in the British national daily press. Let us grant for the moment that the two main parties in both Britain and America get more than their fair share in television political broadcasts and that there is a case for giving more time to, say, the British Liberals (who would in any case be entitled to more if their strength in the country were reflected in Parliament), the Welsh Nationalists, the Scottish Nationalists and the 'orthodox' Communists.
It is not sufficiently considered how little there is in most men's ordinary life to give any largeness either to their conceptions or to their sentiments. And further: • • . the rights and interests of every or any person are only secure from being disregarded when the person interested is able, and habitually disposed, to stand up for them [and] ... the general prosperity attains a greater height, and is more widely diffused, in proportion to the amount and variety of the personal energies enlisted in promoting it.
Equality by John Rees (auth.)