What We Value: Public Health, Social Justice, and Educating for Democracy

Univ. of Virginia. (Malcolm Lester Phi Beta Kappa Lectures on the Liberal Arts and Public Life). Jan. 2022. 176p. ISBN 9780813948478. $25. ED
Pasquerella, president of the American Association of Colleges and Universities and the Phi Beta Kappa Society, presents three timely essays, born out of the Malcolm Lester Phi Beta Kappa Lectures, that bring to the forefront major philosophical struggles that have dominated our society in recent years. First, the author examines the concept of moral distress and the uncomfortable discussions surrounding end-of-life issues that have been exacerbated by technology and certainly during the COVID pandemic. The next essay tackles free speech on college campuses and how polarization and social media have brought this explosive issue to new heights. The third piece focuses on the importance of liberal education to our society and democracy, even though it is denigrated by a larger portion of our citizens than in the past. Well-written and filled with interesting and pertinent examples, this work tackles important issues head-on.
VERDICT A must-read for educators, philosophers, and anyone up for wrestling with these issues.
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