Conversations with Authors - Michael J. Sandel with Pete Buttigieg (Virtual Event)

Monday, October 12, 2020 - 5:30pm


Monday, October 12th • 5:30pm PT/8:30pm ET

Michael J. Sandel

in conversation with

Pete Buttigieg

Conversations with Authors is our free virtual event series! Join us throughout the week for a new chat with a different author.


Michael J. Sandel’s new book, The Tyranny of Merit, offers an alternative way of thinking about success—a view more attentive to the role of luck in human affairs, more conducive to an ethic of humility and solidarity, and more affirming of the dignity of work.

Michael teaches political philosophy at Harvard University. His writings―on justice, ethics, democracy, and markets―have been translated into 27 languages. His course “Justice” is the first Harvard course to be made freely available online and on television. It has been viewed by tens of millions of people around the world, including in China, where Sandel was named the “most influential foreign figure of the year.” His books relate enduring themes of political philosophy to the most vexing moral and civic questions of our time. They include What Money Can’t Buy: The Moral Limits of Markets; Justice: What’s the Right Thing to Do?The Case Against Perfection: Ethics in the Age of Genetic Engineering; Public Philosophy: Essays on Morality in Politics; Democracy’s Discontent: America in Search of a Public Philosophy; and Liberalism and the Limits of Justice.

Pete Buttigieg served two terms as mayor of South Bend, Indiana, and was a Democratic candidate for president of the United States in 2020. A graduate of Harvard University and a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford, He served for seven years as an officer in the U.S. Navy Reserve, taking a leave of absence from the mayor’s office for a deployment to Afghanistan in 2014. In April 2019 he announced his candidacy for president and in February 2020 won the Iowa Caucuses, becoming the first openly gay person to ever win a presidential primary or caucus. He is the author of Trust, an urgent call to foster an “American way of trust” at this painfully polarized juncture in our nation’s history, as well as the memoir, The Shortest Way Home.


Below, please find links to purchase their books.


The Tyranny of Merit: What's Become of the Common Good? Cover Image
ISBN: 9780374289980
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux - September 15th, 2020

The world-renowned philosopher and author of the bestselling Justice explores the central question of our time: What has become of the common good?

What Money Can't Buy: The Moral Limits of Markets Cover Image
ISBN: 9780374533656
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux - April 2nd, 2013

A renowned political philosopher rethinks the role that markets and money should play in our society

Justice: What's the Right Thing to Do? Cover Image
ISBN: 9780374532505
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux - August 17th, 2010

"For Michael Sandel, justice is not a spectator sport," The Nation's reviewer of Justice remarked. In his acclaimed book—based on his legendary Harvard course—Sandel offers a rare education in thinking through the complicated issues and controversies we face in public life today.

The Case Against Perfection: Ethics in the Age of Genetic Engineering Cover Image
ISBN: 9780674036383
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Belknap Press - September 1st, 2009

"Sandel explores a paramount question of our era: how to extend the power and promise of biomedical science to overcome debility without compromising our humanity. His arguments are acute and penetrating, melding sound logic with compassion."
--Jerome Groopman, author of How Doctors Think

Public Philosophy: Essays on Morality in Politics Cover Image
ISBN: 9780674023659
Availability: Special Order
Published: Harvard University Press - October 1st, 2006

In this book, Michael Sandel takes up some of the hotly contested moral and political issues of our time, including affirmative action, assisted suicide, abortion, gay rights, stem cell research, the meaning of toleration and civility, the gap between rich and poor, the role of markets, and the place of religion in public life.

Democracy's Discontent: America in Search of a Public Philosophy Cover Image
ISBN: 9780674197459
Availability: Special Order
Published: Belknap Press - February 6th, 1998

The defect, Sandel maintains, lies in the impoverished vision of citizenship and community shared by Democrats and Republicans alike. American politics has lost its civic voice, leaving both liberals and conservatives unable to inspire the sense of community and civic engagement that self-government requires.

Liberalism and the Limits of Justice Cover Image
ISBN: 9780521567411
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Cambridge University Press - June 18th, 1998

A liberal society seeks not to impose a single way of life, but to leave its citizens as free as possible to choose their own values and ends. It therefore must govern by principles of justice that do not presuppose any particular vision of the good life. But can any such principles be found? And if not, what are the consequences for justice as a moral and political ideal?

Trust: America's Best Chance Cover Image
ISBN: 9781631498770
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Liveright - October 6th, 2020


Shortest Way Home: One Mayor's Challenge and a Model for America's Future Cover Image
ISBN: 9781631496653
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Liveright - September 8th, 2020

Featuring a new introduction and a “Back Home” afterword, Shortest Way Home is Pete Buttigieg’s inspirational story that challenges our perception of the typical American politician.