Why Such a Hard Sell?
In our efforts to help students achieve economic success,
let’s not ignore the personal and civic goals of schooling.
David J. Ferrero
In fall 2009, interested television viewers could watch Harvard philosophy professor Michael Sandel deliver pithy lectures on Aristotle and Immanuel Kant and then pose tough moral questions, such as, Should we have the right to sell our organs on the free market? and Is it OK to kill one person to benefit thousands? These lectures were part of Justice: What’s the Right Thing to Do?, a 12-part series examining competing theories
of justice from ancient times to the present and their applications to contemporary ethical
challenges. The series, which aired on Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) stations and is now
available online at www.justiceharvard.org, was based on Sandel’s popular freshman course
on moral reasoning. It consisted entirely of Sandel’s lectures and discussions with the 900 or