Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 22 September 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Is disability disadvantageous? Although many assume it is paradigmatically so, many disabled individuals disagree. Whom should we trust? On the one hand, pervasive mistrust of already underrepresented groups constitutes a serious epistemic injustice. Yet, on the other, individuals routinely adapt to mistreatment and deprivation and claim to be satisfied. If we take such “adaptive preferences” (APs) at face value, then injustice and oppression may not be recognized or rectified. Thus, we must achieve a balance between taking individuals’ preferences and self-assessment as definitive, and ignoring them entirely. Furthermore, current accounts of APs suffer from an ambiguity: are APs an unreliable guide to individuals’ interests, or to just policy? This chapter argues that we should distinguish between those that are unreliable in the former sense (“well-being APs”), and the latter (“justice APs”). Although all APs are nonautonomous, only well-being APs are irrational. Thus, preferences may be diagnosed as unreliable from the perspective of justice without impugning individuals’ rational capacities.

Keywords: disability, adaptive preferences, disadvantage, justice, well-being, epistemic injustice

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.