Date of Award
Master of Arts (MA)
Christie J. Hartley
Eric E. Wilson
In this thesis I argue that Adam Smith is committed to moral egalitarianism, which extends to his theory of political economy. While Smith’s work is often used to justify economic inequality in society, I show that his political theory is best understood as a kind of relational egalitarianism. Using Elizabeth Anderson’s Democratic Equality as a model, I examine Smith’s commitment to equality in the space of social relationships. In particular, I argue that Smith’s focus on eliminating inequalities that cause oppression in society in conjunction with his efforts to design a political and economic system that will yield social conditions of freedom for individuals make him a relational egalitarian.
Joyce, Kathryn E., "Adam Smith: A Relational Egalitarian Interpretation." Thesis, Georgia State University, 2012.