When Minorities are 99%. The Lost Currency of Anti-Discrimination Law – Insights from Europe(*)

Ordinario di Diritto costituzionale – Università degli Studi di Cagliari


By discussing two components of the ‘universalistic and dignitarian turn’ that anti-discrimination law is facing both in the Us and in Europe, this paper suggests that what is making traditional anti-discrimination old and no longer in tune with contemporary needs and ways of thinking is its paternalistic, though progressive, aim, reflected in its utilitarian, instrumental and skeptical matrix. This has made anti-discrimination, up to now, capable of seeing minorities as problem-bearers or as interest-bearers, but incapable of seeing them as equal participants in the research of just, fair, and changeable settlements of the values of livingtogether.



1. The first component of the universal and dignitarian turn:  improving the efficiency of Equal Protection as a social policy. 2. The European Scenery. A) The European Union. 3. B) The European Convention of Human Rights. 4. The second component of the universal and dignitarian turn: improving the quality of the nondiscrimination principle as an instrument of legal evaluation. 5. Stepping backwards: the utilitarian matrix of anti-discrimination protection in question. 6. Anti-caste principle vs equitableness: anti-discrimination as triumphant skepticism towards law. 7. Turning to dignity in the name of efficiency? 8. Beyond the commutative rationale of anti-discrimination. 9. Towards the ‘justice of the honors’. 10. Turning to dignity in another way: dignity as a quest for more (e)quality in anti-discrimination reasoning.

Continua su PDF