This paper tries to reconcile reciprocity with a fundamentally ‘subject- Centred’ ethic by interpreting the reciprocity condition as a consequence of the fact that justice is in part a relational value. Duties of egalitarian distributive justice are not grounded on the duty to reciprocate benefits already received, but limited by a reasonable assurance of compliance on the part of those able to reciprocate, because their point is to constitute a valuable relationship, one of mutual recognition as equals. We have unconditional duty to help establish just global institutions, institutions which would allow us to share fairly in the burdens and benefits of global economic cooperation, but no unilateral duty to share fairly, where such institutions are not in place. Since non-contribution on the part of those unable to contribute involves no failure of recognition, the disabled do not fall outside the scope of distributive justice.
© 2011 by Lucius & Lucius, Stuttgart