What Money Can't Buy

What Money Can't Buy : The Moral Limits of Markets

3.93 (11,063 ratings by Goodreads)
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Should we pay children to read books or to get good grades? Is it ethical to pay people to test risky new drugs or to donate their organs? What about hiring mercenaries to fight our wars, outsourcing inmates to for-profit prisons, auctioning admission to elite universities, or selling citizenship to immigrants willing to pay? Isn't there something wrong with a world in which everything is for sale?

In recent decades, market values have crowded out nonmarket norms in almost every aspect of life-medicine, education, government, law, art, sports, even family life and personal relations. Without quite realizing it, Sandel argues, we have drifted from having a market economy to being a market society.

In What Money Can't Buy, Sandel examines one of the biggest ethical questions of our time and provokes a debate that's been missing in our market-driven age: What is the proper role of markets in a democratic society, and how can we protect the moral and civic goods that markets do not honour and money cannot buy?
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Product details

  • Paperback | 256 pages
  • 153 x 234 x 18mm | 341g
  • Allen Lane
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 1846144728
  • 9781846144721
  • 92,513

Review quote

One of the most popular teachers in the world * Observer * Sandel is touching something deep in both Boston and Beijing -- Thomas Friedman * New York Times * The most influential foreign figure of the year * China's Newsweek * Few philosophers are compared to rock stars or TV celebrities, but that's the kind of popularity Michael Sandel enjoys in Japan * Japan Times * One of the world's most interesting political philosophers * Guardian * What Money Can't Buy selected by the Guardian as a literary highlight for 2012 * Guardian * America's best-known contemporary political philosopher ... the most famous professor in the world right now... the man is an academic rock star [but] instead of making it all serious and formidable, Sandel makes it light and easy to grasp -- Mitu Jayashankar * Forbes India * An exquisitely reasoned, skillfully written treatise on big issues of everyday life * Kirkus Reviews * Sandel is probably the world's most relevant living philosopher -- Michael Fitzgerald * Newsweek * Mr Sandel is pointing out [a] quite profound change in society -- Jonathan V Last * Wall Street Journal * Provocative and intellectually suggestive ... amply researched and presented with exemplary clarity, [it] is weighty indeed - little less than a wake-up call to recognise our desperate need to rediscover some intelligible way of talking about humanity -- Rowan Williams * Prospect * Brilliant, easily readable, beautifully delivered and often funny ... an indispensable book -- David Aaronovitch * Times * Entertaining and provocative -- Diane Coyle * Independent * Poring through Harvard philosopher Michael Sandel's new book ... I found myself over and over again turning pages and saying, "I had no idea." I had no idea that in the year 2000 ... "a Russian rocket emblazoned with a giant Pizza Hut logo carried advertising into outer space," or that in 2001, the British novelist Fay Weldon wrote a book commissioned by the jewelry company Bulgari ... I knew that stadiums are now named for corporations, but had no idea that now "even sliding into home is a corporate-sponsored event" ... I had no idea that in 2001 an elementary school in New Jersey became America's first public school "to sell naming rights to a corporate sponsor" -- Thomas Friedman * New York Times * A vivid illustration ... Let's hope that What Money Can't Buy, by being so patient and so accumulative in its argument and its examples, marks a permanent shift in these debates -- John Lanchester * Guardian * In a culture mesmerised by the market, Sandel's is the indispensable voice of reason ... if we ... bring basic values into political life in the way that Sandel suggests, at least we won't be stuck with the dreary market orthodoxies that he has so elegantly demolished -- John Gray * New Statesman * What Money Can't Buy is replete with examples of what money can, in fact, buy ... Sandel has a genius for showing why such changes are deeply important -- Martin Sandbu * Financial Times * Michael Sandel ... is currently the most effective communicator of ideas in English * Guardian * Sandel, the most famous teacher of philosophy in the world, has shown that it is possible to take philosophy into the public square without insulting the public's intelligence -- Michael Ignatieff * New Republic *
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About Michael J. Sandel

Michael J. Sandel is the Anne T. and Robert M. Bass Professor of Government at Harvard University. His legendary 'Justice' course is the first Harvard course made freely available online (www.JusticeHarvard.org) and on television. Hiss work has been translated into 15 languages and been the subject of television series in the U.K., the U.S., Japan, South Korea, Sweden, and the Middle East. He has delivered the Tanner Lectures at Oxford and been a visiting professor at the Sorbonne, Paris. In 2010, China Newsweek named him the "most influential foreign figure of the year" in China. Sandel was the 2009 BBC Reith Lecturer, and his most recent book Justice is an international bestseller.
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Rating details

11,063 ratings
3.93 out of 5 stars
5 28% (3,134)
4 43% (4,762)
3 23% (2,519)
2 5% (510)
1 1% (138)
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