爱思英语编者按:约翰·罗尔斯(1921年2月21日-2002年11月24日),美国政治哲学家、伦理学家、普林斯顿大学哲学博士,哈佛大学教授,写过《正义论》、《政治自由主义》、《作为公平的正义:正义新论》、《万民法》等名著,是20世纪英语世界最著名的政治哲学家之一。

Sen-sational
煽情的森
 
EXACTLY 200 years after Thomas Malthus predicted starvation caused by overpopulation and scarce food, Amartya Sen has won a Nobel prize for economics partly for proving that Malthus was wrong. The Indian economist, who this year became Master of Trinity College, Cambridge, was officially awarded the prize for his work on welfare economics. Called “the conscience of the profession” by another Nobel laureate, Robert Solow, Mr Sen has merged philosophy with economics.
 
在马尔萨斯预测了由过剩人口和稀缺食物引发饥荒整整200年后,阿马蒂亚·森(Amartya Sen)因为部分地证明马尔萨斯是错误的而获得了诺贝尔经济学奖。这位今年成为剑桥三一学院院长的印度经济学家已经因为对福利经济学的研究而被正式授予了这个奖项。被另一位诺奖得主罗伯特·索洛(Robert Solow)称为“学界良心”的森融合了经济学和哲学。
 
In his 1981 book “Poverty and Famines: An Essay on Entitlement and Deprivation”, Mr Sen challenged the prevailing wisdom that declining food supply is the most important cause of famine. Why, Mr Sen asked, has famine often occurred in countries where the supply of food per head is no lower than in previous years? He concluded that there are social and economic factors at work that limit the economic opportunities of certain groups and so cause starvation.
 
在他1981年的著作《贫困与饥荒:论权利与剥夺》(Poverty and Famines: An Essay on Entitlement and Deprivation)中,森挑战了日趋减少的食物供应是饥荒的最重要原因的主流观念。森问道:为什么饥荒经常发生在人均食物供应不再低于之前年份的国家?他的结论是:这是因为存在着限制特定人群机会的社会和经济因素在起作用,因而才引起饥荒。
 
In addition to his work in development economics, Mr Sen earned a reputation in the 1970s for significantly advancing the field of social-choice theory. Building on work done previously by another economist, Kenneth Arrow (who won the Nobel Prize in 1972), Mr Sen argued that inequality ought to be a fundamental consideration in collective action. To this end, he developed several indices with which to measure the welfare of individuals in society. His “poverty index” took into account not only the proportion of a society living below the poverty line, but also the degree of poverty among the most destitute. Mr Sen's work has been used by other economists not only to compare the welfare of individuals across society, but also of countries around the world.
 
除了发展经济学方面的研究,森还因为显著推进社会选择理论而在70年代名声大振。基于另一位经济学家(1972年获得诺贝尔奖的)肯尼斯·阿罗(Kenneth Arrow )之前的研究,森指出,不平等应当成为集体行动中的一个根本关切。为此,他提出了多个用以衡量个人在社会中的福利的指数。他的“贫困指数”不仅加入了生活在贫困线下的社会比例,还将最贫困人群的贫困程度纳入其中。森的研究不仅一直被其他经济学家用来比较跨社会的个人福利,而且还被用来比较世界各国的个人福利。
 
The choice of Mr Sen is ironic. Last year's laureates, Myron Scholes and Robert Merton, won their prize for work on the pricing of risk. As partners in Long-Term Capital Management, a hedge fund that nearly collapsed, their work has recently made a lot of rich people poorer—themselves included. Mr Sen's work, in contrast, was aimed at making the poor better off. And Mr Sen himself is now $1m the richer.
 
森的选择具有讽刺意味。去年的得主——斯科尔斯和默顿——曾因为他们为风险定价的研究而获奖。作为即将崩塌的对冲基金——长期资本管理公司的合伙人,他们的研究近来让包括他们自己的许多富人一贫如洗。相比之下,森的研究的目的是让穷人过上好日子,而且他自己的身价现在也涨了100万美元。
 
From the print edition: Finance and economics 》》》
____________________________________________________________________________________________________
 
Amartya Sen on justice
阿玛蒂亚·森论正义
How to do it better
如何让它变得更好
 
In his study on how to create justice in a globalised world, Amartya Sen expounds on human aspiration and deprivation—and takes a swipe at John Rawls
在他有关如何在一个全球化的世界中创造正义的研究中,阿玛蒂亚·森详细阐述了人类的愿景和剥夺—进而猛批了约翰·罗尔斯
 
The Idea of Justice. By Amartya Sen. Belknap Press; 496 pages; $29.95. Allen Lane; £25.
《正义的观念》 作者:阿玛蒂亚·森
 
AT THE disputed crossroads where economics and ethics meet stands Amartya Sen, a Nobel-prize-winning economist who thinks like a philosopher. In a dauntingly impressive flow of books and papers over 40 years he has done much to change both disciplines for the better, humanising the one, bringing content from the real world to the other. His work is technical, however, and the fine detail has sometimes hidden the shape of the whole. Mr Sen's latest book answers both difficulties in magisterial style.
 
在争论不休的经济与道德交汇的十字路口,站着阿马蒂亚·森——一位像哲学家一样思考的诺贝尔奖得主经济学家。在过去40多年那些令人叹为观止的著作和论文中,他所做的绝大多数是为了让这两门学科变得更好,让一门人性化,把来自真实世界的内容注入另一门。然而,他的研究是技术性的,而且极致的细节有时给人一种只见树木不见森林的感觉。森的新书以权威的口吻回答了这两门学科的一些难题。
 
In the courtliest of tones, Mr Sen charges John Rawls, an American philosopher who died in 2002, with sending political thinkers up a tortuous blind alley. The Rawlsian project of trying to describe ideally just institutions is a distracting and ultimately fruitless way to think about social injustice, Mr Sen complains. Such a spirited attack against possibly the most influential English-speaking political philosopher of the past 100 years will alone excite attention.
 
森委婉地地指责2002年去世的美国哲学家约翰·罗尔斯(John Rawls),认为他把政治思想家送上了一条蜿蜒曲折的死胡同。他抱怨说,试图描绘理想的正义制度的罗尔斯式项目是一种让人偏离征途而且会无果而终的思考社会不公的方式。仅仅是这样一种针对可能是过去100年中最有影响力的英语政治哲学家的高调攻击就会引起注意。
 
“The Idea of Justice” serves also as a commanding summation of Mr Sen's own work on economic reasoning and on the elements and measurement of human well-being. It is often intricate but never worthy. Conceptual subtleties flank blunt accounts of famine's causes or physical handicap's economic effects. A conviction that economists and philosophers are in business to improve the world burns on almost every page.
 
《正义的观念》还是森本人有关经济理论和人类福祉的要素和衡量的研究的大纲。虽然此书经常纷繁复杂,但物有所值。概念的精妙烘托了关于饥荒的原因或是物理缺陷的经济影响的坦率论述。一种经济学家和哲学家是在为改善这个世界而工作的理念镌刻在几乎每一页之上。
 
Mr Sen writes with dry wit, a feel for history and a relaxed cosmopolitanism. He presumes that the values in play are of global, not purely Western, import. Earlier thinkers he cites on justice and toleration come less from fourth-century Athens or 17th-century England than from India, where he was born 75 years ago. Growing up in Bengal, he learned about poverty and equality directly, not from books.
 
森文笔犀利,带有一种历史感和一种平和的世界大同主义。他认为,正在起作用的价值观是全球性的,不纯粹是西方的。他所引用的早期思想家关于正义和宽容的观点,来自4世纪雅典或17世纪英格兰的,要少于来自印度来自他75年前出生的印度。在孟加拉长大的他,曾经直接而不是从书本上了解了贫穷和平等。
 
Two themes predominate: economic rationality and social injustice. Mr Sen approaches them alike. He can, when he wants, theorise without oxygen at any height. But he believes that theory, to be of use, must keep its feet on the ground. Modern theorists in his view have drifted too far from the actual world.
 
两大主题贯穿始终:经济理性和社会不公。森对两者的处理一视同仁。他能够在自己需要的时候,在任何高度毫不费力地将两者理论化。但是,他相信,理论,要想有用,必须脚踏实地。在他看来,当代理论家已经太远地偏离了现实世界。
 
Economists have tended to content themselves with a laughably simple picture of human motivation, rationality and well-being. People are not purely self-interested. They care for others and observe social norms. They do not always reason “instrumentally”, seeking least-cost means to given ends. They question the point of their aims and the worth of their wants. Well-being, finally, has no single measure and is not inscrutable to others. Its elements are many and do not boil down to “utility” or some cash-value equivalent.
 
经济学家往往是满足于一副可笑的有关人类动机、理性和福祉的简单图景。人不是绝对自私的。他们关系别人,遵守社会规范。他们不总是“工具化地”推理,寻求针对既定目的的最低成本手段。他们质疑目标的意义和需求的价值。最后,福祉没有独一无二的标准,并且对他人是不可理解的。福祉的要素有很多,而且无法归结为“效用”或是某些金钱等价物。
 
Complexity, though, need not breed mystery. Well-being's diverse elements (freedom from hunger, disease, indignity and discrimination, to name four) are generally observable and, he believes, measurable. They are, to put it crudely, matters of fact, not taste, even if his philosophical story—that what underpins the several elements of well-being is that they all extend people's “capabilities”—is still argued over.
 
然而,复杂性不一定产生神秘。福祉的各种要素(比如说远离饥饿、疾病、侮辱和歧视的这四种自由),一般是看得见摸得着的;并且,他相信也是可以衡量的。说白了,它们是实在之物,而不是判断力之物,纵然他的哲学观点——支撑福祉多个要素之物是全都能够扩展人类“能力”的——仍旧争议不休。
 
Rawls held that social justice depended on having just institutions, whereas Mr Sen thinks that good social outcomes are what matter. Strictly both could be right. The practical brunt of Mr Sen's criticism, however, is that just institutions do not ensure social justice. You can, in addition, recognise social injustices without knowing how a perfectly fair society would arrange or justify itself. Rawlsianism, though laudable in spirit, is too theoretical, and has distracted political philosophers from corrigible ills in the actual world.
 
罗尔斯认为,社会正义取决与拥有公正的制度;森认为,好的社会结果至关重要。严格地说,两者可能都是正确的。然而,森之批判主义的实际冲击力是,公正的制度无法确保社会正义。而且,在不知道一个绝对公平的社会将如何安排或是证明自身的情况下,人们可能会承认社会不公。罗尔斯主义,尽管在精神上值得赞赏,但是太理论化了,而且让政治哲学家偏离了真实世界中的可纠正之恶。
 
Other arguments feed Mr Sen's main themes. For example, that social-choice theory (how to gauge a society's welfare from that of its members) permits good-enough, albeit incomplete, social comparisons. Also that the inevitable fact that moral judgments are made from a viewpoint does not make moral values local or subjective; that when talking of equality, you must always ask “equality of what?”; that rights carry extra weight without necessarily outweighing every concern; that justice's demands outrun countries' borders.
 
其他论述衬托出森的两大主题。例如,社会选择理论(如何从成员的福利衡量一个社会的福利)允许虽不完善却足够好的社会比较;道德的判断出自一种立场这个不可避免的事实不会让道德价值观本地化或者主观化;在谈到平等时,必须总是要问“什么样的平等?”;权利承载着不必然地超过每一个关切的额外重量;正义的需求超越国家边界等等。
 
Tying the whole together is Mr Sen's confidence that, though values are complex, economics provides tools for thinking clearly about complexity. “The Idea of Justice” is a feast, though perhaps not one to be consumed at a single sitting.
 
将所有这一切组织在一起来是森的自信——即,尽管价值观是复杂的,但经济学为厘清复杂性提供了工具。《正义的观念》是一种享受,尽管可能不是那种一次就能消费掉的享受。
 
Virtually every claim Mr Sen makes will be objected to by someone. Right-wingers who follow Friedrich Hayek or James Buchanan will treat “social justice” and “social choice” as nonsenses. Mr Sen wants to humanise canons of “maximising” rationality; behavioural economists, much in fashion, aim to ditch them altogether. Rawlsian liberals will rally to the defence of their hero. Nobody, however, can reasonably complain any longer that they do not see how the parts of Mr Sen's grand enterprise fit together.
 
事实上,森提出的每一个结论都会遭到反对。追随弗里德里希·哈耶克或詹姆斯·布坎南的右翼会把“社会正义”和“社会选择”当成是胡言乱语。森想将“最大化”理性的真谛人性化;时尚的行为经济学家意在将其一网打尽。罗尔斯式的自由主义者将奋起保护它们的英雄。然而,无人能够再次合理地抱怨说,他们无法目睹森的宏图大业的各个部分是如何成为一个整体的。
 
His hero is Adam Smith: not the Smith of free-market legend, but the father of political economy who grasped the force of moral constraint and the value of sociability. To encapsulate the shift in attitude that Mr Sen has sought to bring about, ethics and economics are to be seen as Smith saw them: not two subjects, but one.
 
他的英雄是亚当·斯密:不是自由市场之传奇的斯密,而是洞悉了道德制约和社会价值力量的政治经济学之父的斯密。为了概括森力求所带来的这种态度上的转变,伦理学和经济学得到了斯密曾经对它们的那种对待:不是两门学科,而是一门。
 
Mr Sen ends, suitably, with democracy. It can take many institutional forms, he says. But none succeeds without open debate about values and principles. To that vital element in public reason, as he calls it, “The Idea of Justice” is a contribution of the highest rank.
 
森恰到好处地以民主结束了全书。他说,民主可能表现为许多制度形式。但是,失去了关于价值观和原则的公开辩论,没有一种民主能够成功。如其所言,《正义的观念》是对公共理性的这个关键要素的一种最高级别的贡献。