In this paper, I evaluate affirmative action from the framework of virtue ethics. In doing so, I consider the principles behind affirmative action as well as its consequences because a perfectly virtuous person will act per just principles but will also be concerned with the consequences of her actions. An attempt to restore justice that utilizes a mechanism known to be ineffective is not truly an attempt to restore justice, and so is not virtuous. Therefore, if affirmative action is principally justified, a complete virtue ethical analysis will still ask, “Do we know if it works?” I conclude that affirmative action, as an attempt to rectify past wrongs, follows just principles, and that a consequential analysis indicates it is effective.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.