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Equality and the British LeftA Study in Progressive Political Thought, 1900-64$
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Ben Jackson

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780719073069

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: July 2012

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719073069.001.0001

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Riches and poverty

Riches and poverty

Chapter:
(p.17) 1 Riches and poverty
Source:
Equality and the British Left
Author(s):

Ben Jackson

Publisher:
Manchester University Press
DOI:10.7228/manchester/9780719073069.003.0002

This chapter begins with an account of the shared egalitarian outlook by considering the Left's objections to class inequality. Progressive writers and politicians employed a variety of arguments against inequality. By documenting the range of these arguments, this chapter gives an initial indication of the character of the British Left's egalitarian vision. It then asks whether progressives saw the aims of social mobility and meritocratic equal opportunity as able to satisfy their concerns about class inequality. It maintains that a meritocratic distribution was seen as an insufficient realisation of the Left's understanding of social justice.

Keywords:   class inequality, progressive writers, British Left, egalitarian vision, social mobility, equal opportunity, meritocratic distribution, social justice

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