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Michael Sandel brings 'Justice' to Grand Valley

Posted on September 15, 2011

A Harvard professor with rock star status will present the Distinguished Academic Lecture during the Fall Arts Celebration at Grand Valley State University.

Michael Sandel will present “Justice: What’s the Right Thing to Do?” Thursday, September 22, at 7 p.m. at the L.V. Eberhard Center, 301 W. Fulton, Pew Grand Rapids Campus.

A professor of political philosophy at Harvard since 1980, Sandel’s wildly popular course, “Justice,” has enrolled more than 15,000 students. The introduction to moral and political philosophy is based on the great philosophers of the past and their relevance to contemporary issues, ranging from affirmative action and bioethics, to government bailouts and immigration reform.

Fred Antczak, dean of Grand Valley’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, called Sandel one of the leading public philosophers of our time. “His recent New York Times best-seller, Justice, is that rare accomplishment — an excellent work of professional philosophy that is accessible to the public,” he said. “And it has had far-reaching impact.”

In fact, Sandel’s is the first Harvard course to be made freely available online ( Segments of his lectures have also been broadcast on PBS, BBC and to audiences in Japan on NHK. His books, essays and lectures have captured audiences, in part, because of his engaging style and wealth of knowledge that brings historic context to bear on contemporary issues.
Sandel graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Brandeis University in 1975 and received a doctorate from Balliol College, Oxford, as a Rhodes scholar. His other books include Liberalism and the Limits of Justice, Democracy’s Discontent, Public Philosophy: Essays on Morality in Politics and The Case against Perfection: Ethics in the Age of Genetic Engineering. His work has been translated into 15 foreign languages.

Sandel’s book, Justice, will be available for purchase and signing after the lecture. For more information about Fall Arts Celebration visit, or call (616) 331-2180.

Fall Arts Celebration is made possible, in part, through the generosity of sponsors including, Ginny Gearhart and the Gearhart Family, Liesel and Hank Meijer, Elaine and Larry Shay, Judy and Peter Theune, and media partner WOOD Radio.


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