The Tyranny of Merit

Political philosopher Michael Sandel discusses the myth of the meritocracy, the idea that if we work hard, we can succeed, and how it is contributing to greater inequality.

Listen 49:30

Americans generally believe that if we work hard, we can succeed and that we shape and control our own destinies. But Harvard professor of political philosophy MICHAEL SANDEL begs to differ because we all don’t start off on equal footing from the beginning. His new book, The Tyranny Of Merit: What’s Become of the Common Good deconstructs this enduring and uniquely American myth finding that it has driven us apart and contributed to growing income inequality. He joins us to talk about how politicians have used the myth of meritocracy in recent decades, the college admissions scandal, and why it’s important to rid ourselves of this mindset.

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