Law and Justice

  • Created by: Teganwi
  • Created on: 17-05-21 11:14

Law and Justice

The meaning of Justice

Justice can be described as fairness and equality. The idea includes treating every case in a like manner, showing imaprtiality and acting in good faith. However, it has been mulled over over centries, this has lead to a range of theories to explain its meaning and application.

One of the earliest was Plato, a Greek philospher. He saw it as being harmony between the different sectors or classes in society. He regarded justice as an overarching vitrue of both individuals abd societies. This is reflected in Criminal and Civil law today

Plato's work was continued by Aristotle, who stressed the need fro proportionality and achieving the middle way. This can be seeen in the law's attempts to balance competing interests, such as individual's right to freedom of expression and protection of society from extreme views.

Thomas Aquinas continued to define justice in a similar way of Aristotle. Justice as governing our relationships with other people. The end result of justice is the common good, for both the individual and society.

After this theories of justice were rapidly developed, in this we will consider

  • Distrubitive justice- fair allocation of the benefits and responsibilites
  • Utilitarianism- maximising happiness is the objective of justice
  • Social Justice- equal justice in all aspects of society

Theories of Justice

Distributive justice- there are several philosphers who have expanded this view

  • Aristotle- he identified particular examples of justice, distributive being one of them. He argued that a just state will distribute its wealth on the basis of merit. Each is given due to their contribution to society. This is where the worthiest, rather than the neediest, recieve the greater share. To allocate resources based on people's needs would be unjust, as it would reward the lazy as much as the hard-working. 
  • Thomas Aquinas- distributive justice concerns the fair allocation of goods and responsibilies. This is governed by the principle of due proportion. This means that people recieve in accordance to their merit, rank and need. Merit is based on that it would be wrong to pay workers an equal amount for unequal work. He based his doctrone on natural law.
  • Karl Marx- founder of communism developed a different model of distributive justice. The slogan is 'ffrom each according to his ability, to each according to his need'. This encompasses two principles of communism;

1. each will maximise their contribution to the common wealth by making full use of their abilities,

2. and each will recieve according to their need, regardless of the personal contribution they have made.

Aristotle would have regarded this as unjust as it potentially gives the greatest rewards to the least contributive and thus least derserving.

  • Chaim Perelman- he concluded that justice cannot be studied logically, as each attempt is based upon a person's subjective values. He discussed different understandings of justice

1. To each according to his merits- each person is treated how they deserve, the good are rewarded and the bad are deprived or punished. This…




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Your article on "Law and Justice" is a comprehensive and insightful exploration of the multifaceted concept of justice. You've done an excellent job of tracing the evolution of justice theories from Plato to modern thinkers like John Rawls and Robert Nozick. The article also delves into the practical aspects of justice, such as procedural, corrective, and substantive justice, providing a well-rounded view.

I particularly appreciate how you've highlighted the tension between different theories of justice—like distributive justice and utilitarianism—and their real-world applications. This adds a layer of complexity that is often missing in discussions about justice. Your examination of the limitations of legal aid and mandatory life sentences also adds nuance to the topic, illustrating that justice is not a one-size-fits-all concept but rather a dynamic interplay of various principles and practicalities.

One area that could be further explored is the role of technology in shaping modern justice systems. For instance, how do advancements in AI and data analytics impact procedural justice? Could they potentially make the system more impartial, or do they risk embedding existing biases? I do believe Ai tools will play a key role in the future legal profession and also law in general.

Overall, your article is a thought-provoking read that encourages the reader to consider the complexities of justice in both theory and practice. Thank you for sharing such a well-researched and articulate piece.