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Essays in Philosophy

Volume 20, Issue 2, August 2019

The Philosophical Dimensions of Urban Transportation

Samantha Elaine Noll, Laci Nichole Hubbard-Mattix
Pages 130-145

Health Justice in the City: Why an Intersectional Analysis of Transportation Matters for Bioethics

Recently, there has been a concerted effort to shift bioethics’ traditional focus from clinical and research settings to more robustly engage with issues of justice and health equity. This broader bioethics agenda seeks to embed health related issues in wider institutional and cultural contexts and to help develop fair policies. In this paper, we argue that bioethicists who ascribe to the broader bioethics’ agenda could gain valuable insights from the interdisciplinary field of environmental justice and transportation justice, in particular. We then proceed to demonstrate the importance of adopting an intersectional approach to transportation and health. The paper concludes with the argument that intersectional gender inequality is of particular importance when studying both health equity and the unequal distribution of burdens associated with transportation systems in local contexts. This essay is meant to be the beginning of a robust conversation concerning health equity, transportation justice, and intersectional distributions of both benefits and burdens.

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