Date of Award

Fall 12-1-2013

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Andrew Altman

Second Advisor

Christie J. Hartley

Third Advisor

Andrew J. Cohen


One of the most active areas of debate in liberal theories of global justice regards the proper application of domestic egalitarian theories of distributive justice, such as that posed by John Rawls, at the scale of global considerations of need, remediation, and ultimately the development of a just order. This paper considers three popularly-referenced theories (that of Michael Blake, Andrea Sangiovanni, and Thomas Nagel) that each advance a variant of a more general thesis, sometimes referred to as ‘anti-cosmpolitan’ or ‘internationalist’ – that liberal egalitarian theories do not presently entail a uniform global principle of distribution that mandates material equality between all individuals, irrespective of their socio-political affiliations. Each theory is described in detail and representatives of major objections are evaluated along with potential responses, concluding with a finding that one interpretation of Blake’s theory appears to be the most promising avenue in developing the internationalist thesis.