This is the first of (hopefully) many posts that document the extraordinary thoughts that I encounter in my reading material. The following illustration is adapted from The Idea of Justice by Amartya Sen.
Anne, Bob and Carla are fighting over a flute and ask you to settle the dispute.
Anne claims that she should get the flute as she is the only one of the three who knows how to play it. Given that the others admit they do not know how to play it, Anne argues that the flute belongs to her.
Bob is the poorest of the children. Not possessing toys of his own, the flute would give him something to play with.
Carla points out the flute was made completely out of her own labour and her own money. The reason why the dispute arose was because the other two children stole the flute just after it was finished.
Who do you give the flute to?
Sen’s book is incredibly intriguing. Just to put this in context the above story is in the Introduction; I have not even started the first chapter. It might be a little nerdy, but I am tremendously excited to engage with Sens’ thoughts.
For now though, how would you resolve the dispute?