Debating Democracy: Do We Need More or Less?
1:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 20, 2022 at MTSU Student Union Ballroom
Professor and author Jason Brennan visited MTSU to discuss topics from his latest book, Debating Democracy. "Democracy does not convert popular opinion into power. Instead, for most voters, politics is less about policy than it is about signaling their loyalty to their peer groups. Democracy makes people mean and stupid because being mean and stupid sends a strong signal of loyalty. Democracy may be the best system we have so far, but making democracy work means acknowledging its systematic flaws, keeping democracy in its place, and being willing to look for methods of overcoming its problems," Brennan says.
Sponsored by the Dr. Ming Wang Cosmopolitan Initiative Lecture Series and the MTSU Distinguished Lecture Series.
About the Speaker: Jason Brennan, Ph.D., is Robert J. and Elizabeth Flanagan Family Professor of Strategy, Economics, Ethics, and Public Policy at the McDonough School of Business at Georgetown University. He specializes in politics, philosophy, and economics. He is the editor of Public Affairs Quarterly and an associate editor of Social Philosophy and Policy. He is currently overseeing a $2.1 million project on "Markets, Social Entrepreneurship, and Effective Altruism," funded by the Templeton Foundation.
He is the author of 15 books: Debating Democracy, with Hélène Landemore (Oxford University Press, 2021), Business Ethics for Better Behavior, with William English, John Hasnas, and Peter Jaworski (Oxford University Press, 2021), Why It's OK to Want to Be Rich (Routledge Press 2020), Good Work if You Can Get It (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2020); Injustice for All: America's Dysfunctional Criminal Justice System and How to Fix It, with Christopher Surprenant (Routledge, 2019); Cracks in the Ivory Tower: The Moral Mess of Higher Education, with Phil Magness (Oxford University Press, 2019); When All Else Fails: Resistance, Violence, and State Injustice (Princeton University Press, 2018); In Defense of Openness: Global Justice as Global Freedom (Oxford University Press, 2018), with Bas van der Vossen; Against Democracy (Princeton University Press, 2016); Markets without Limits, with Peter Jaworski (Routledge Press, 2016); Compulsory Voting: For and Against, with Lisa Hill (Cambridge University Press, 2014); Why Not Capitalism? (Routledge Press, 2014); Libertarianism: What Everyone Needs to Know (Oxford University Press, 2012); The Ethics of Voting (Princeton University Press, 2011); and, with David Schmidtz, A Brief History of Liberty (Wiley-Blackwell, 2010). He is co-editor, along with David Schmidtz and Bas Van der Vossen, of the Routledge Handbook of Libertarianism (Routledge, 2017).