Justice. What Should We Do? Lecture Series

Justice. What Should We Do?

  1. The event took place on
Michael Sandel
Michael Sandel, direction

The North-American philosopher Michael J. Sandel has been teaching a course about Justice at Harvard University for 20 years, which over 14,000 students have taken. Coinciding with the publication of his book Justicia ¿Hacemos lo que debemos? (Justice: What’s the Right Thing to Do) in Spain, Professor Sandel will give a lecture on this subject –in English and with simultaneous translation– at the Fundación Juan March.

 

Multimedia

  1. Michael SandelMichael SandelMichael J. Sandel (Minneapolis, 1953) ocupa la cátedra Anne T. y Robert M. Bass de Políticas en la Universidad de Harvard y está considerado como uno de los autores de referencia en el campo de la filosofía política de Estados Unidos. Desde hace veinte años imparte un curso sobre la Justicia en la Universidad de Harvard por el que han pasado más de 14.000 estudiantes –es la asignatura que más alumnos matriculados ha conseguido en esta prestigiosa universidad norteamericana-. El contenido del curso ofrecido en el otoño de 2005 está grabado y está disponible on line. Se hizo una edición resumida de esa grabación en una serie televisada de doce capítulos, coproducida por la misma Universidad de Harvard y de esa serie surgió el libro que en español se titula Justicia ¿Hacemos lo que debemos? Es autor de numerosas obras, muchas de ellas traducidas a otros idiomas; al español se han vertido las siguientes: El liberalismo y los límites de la justicia (2000), Contra la perfección (2007) y Filosofía pública: ensayos sobre moral en política. Durante la era de George W. Bush presidió el Council on Bioethics, donde se examinaron las implicaciones éticas de las nuevas tecnologías biomédicas, campo en el que también está interesado como lo muestra el curso que con el dr. Douglas Melton impartió, “Ética y Biotecnología”, un seminario sobre las consideraciones éticas atribuibles a la aplicación de procedimientos biotecnológicos. Es miembro de la American Academy of Arts and Sciences y del Council on Foreign Relations.  Actualmente vive en Brooklyn, Massachusetts.

The idea of justice is one of the core topics of moral philosophy, and by extension of political philosophy. How to do what is fair is also that which every day and every person needs to decide in multiple occasions. Thus, the best way to understand the moral implications of the idea of justice includes exploring those daily decisions and how current issues reflect very deep ideas. Starting from examples ranging from homosexual marriage or immigration to euthanasia, biotechnology, or the limits of the market, Michael Sandel elaborates a critic to the three main schools of thought: the utilitarian; the one linking justice and freedom (differentiating between the supporters of "laissez-faire" and those more egalitarian); and the one linking justice with virtue and good life.

The Editorial Debate will be publishing this month of February the Spanish edition of Justicia, a book summarizing the television series of twelve chapters, which summarizes in turn Sandel's classes in Harvard along the Fall of 2005. This is an essay by Sandel from which we extract the following long fragment: "Which are our duties towards others in a free society? Should the governments collect from the rich to help the poor? Is the free market fair? Could it be that sometimes telling the truth is not good? Can it be possible that under certain circumstances assassination becomes morally necessary? Is Is it possible or desirable to legislate about moral issues? Do the individual rights enter in conflict with the common good? Justice, the course imparted by Michael J. Sandel is one of the most popular and influential of the University of Harvard. More than a thousand students pack the auditorium to listen how Professor Sandel relates the big questions of public philosophy with current topics, especially the most controversial. Justice invites us to consider, regardless of our different ideologies, hot current issues from new and enlightening perspectives. Sandel is the example of the challenge to think deeply and proves how a more firm understanding of philosophy can help us to better understand policy, moral, and our own convictions".