What's the Right Thing to Do?
A renowned Harvard professor's brilliant, sweeping, inspiring account of the role of justice in our society--and of the moral dilemmas we face as citizens
What are our obligations to others as people in a free society? Should government tax the rich to help the poor? Is the free market fair? Is it sometimes wrong to tell the truth? Is killing sometimes morally required? Is it possible, or desirable, to legislate morality? Do individual rights and the common good conflict?
These questions are at the core of our public life today—and at the heart of Justice, in which Michael J. Sandel shows how a surer grasp of philosophy can help us to make sense of politics, morality, and our own convictions as well.
Sandel's legendary Justice course is one of the most popular and influential at Harvard. Up to a thousand students pack the campus theater to hear Sandel relate the big questions of political philosophy to the most vexing issues of the day. In the fall of 2009, PBS will air a series based on the course.
Justice offers listeners the same exhilarating journey that captivates Harvard students—the challenge of thinking our way through the hard moral challenges we confront as citizens. It is a searching, lyrical exploration of the meaning of justice, an audiobook that invites readers of all political persuasions to consider familiar controversies in fresh and illuminating ways. Affirmative action, same-sex marriage, physician-assisted suicide, abortion, national service, the moral limits of markets, patriotism and dissent—Sandel shows how even the most hotly contested issues can be illuminated by reasoned moral argument.
Justice is lively, thought-provoking, and wise—an essential new addition to the small shelf of books that speak convincingly to the big questions of our civic life.
In The News
“Sandel offers a primer on a number of theories of justice and applies them to questions that are (or have been) the subject of political discourse. Emphasizing the accessibility of the material, Sandel presents summaries of these theories that are clear and easy to understand.” —AudioFile
“Sandel maintains a consistently engaging tone, and his probing moral questions about the nature of freedom, choice, truth and the individual are brought down to an accessible and stimulating level.” —Winston-Salem Journal
“This work is an appealing invitation for listeners to use more scrutiny regarding their won actions as well as those of politicians and media personalities. The depth and total absence of righteousness in the author's writing and vocal tone make this an essential lesson for anyone interested in promoting individual virtue and social justice.” —AudioFile