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Martha Nussbaum
Martha Nussbaum, photo by Robin Holland
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April 18, 2008

Bill Moyers talks with Martha Nussbaum, the Ernst Freund Distinguished Service Professor of Law and Ethics at University of Chicago, about church and state, and her newest book, LIBERTY OF CONSCIENCE: IN DEFENSE OF AMERICA'S TRADITION OF RELIGIOUS EQUALITY. Nussbaum argues for a new take on the church and state debate.

"If you look into the religions, they have this deep idea of human dignity and the source of dignity being conscience. This capacity for searching for the meaning of life. And that leads us directly to the idea of respect. Because if conscience is this deep and valuable source of searching for meaning, then we all have it whether we're agreeing or disagreeing. And we all ought to respect it and respect it equally in one another."

>From the Danbury Letter to the Revamped Pledge — highlights from the ongoing discussion about separation of church and state in America.

>MOYERS DIGITAL ARCHIVE: Martha Nussbaum
Bill Moyers talks with Martha Nussbaum about ethics — ancient and modern — in the WORLD OF IDEAS series.

Biography

Martha Nussbaum received her B.A. from NYU and her M.A. and Ph.D. from Harvard. She has taught at Harvard, Brown, and Oxford Universities and is currently the Ernst Freund Distinguished Service Professor of Law and Ethics at University of Chicago. She is an Associate in the Classics Department and the Political Science Department, a Member of the Committee on Southern Asian Studies, and a Board Member of the Human Rights Program. She is the founder and Coordinator of the Center for Comparative Constitutionalism.

Her publications include ARISTOTLE'S DE MOTU ANIMALIUM (1978), THE FRAGILITY OF GOODNESS: LUCK AND ETHICS IN GREEK TRAGEDY AND PHILOSOPHY (1986, updated edition 2000), LOVE'S KNOWLEDGE (1990), THE THERAPY OF DESIRE (1994), POETIC JUSTICE (1996), FOR LOVE OF COUNTRY (1996), CULTIVATING HUMANITY: A CLASSICAL DEFENSE OF REFORM IN LIBERAL EDUCATION (1997), SEX AND SOCIAL JUSTICE (1998), WOMEN AND HUMAN DEVELOPMENT (2000), UPHEAVALS OF THOUGHT: THE INTELLIGENCE OF EMOTIONS (2001), HIDING FROM HUMANITY: DISGUST, SHAME, AND THE LAW (2004), FRONTIERS OF JUSTICE: DISABILITY, NATIONALITY, SPECIES MEMBERSHIP (2006), and THE CLASH WITHIN: DEMOCRACY, RELIGIOUS VIOLENCE, AND INDIA'S FUTURE (2007). She has received honorary degrees from thirty-two colleges and universities in the U. S., Canada, Asia, and Europe.

Published on April 18, 2008.

Guest photo by Robin Holland

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References and Reading:
"Trading on America's puritanical streak," THE ATLANTA JOURNAL CONSTITUTION, Martha Nussbaum, March 14, 2008.

"Q and A with Martha Nussbaum," THE GUARDIAN, October 27 2007.

"Discussing Disgust On the folly of gross-out public policy. An interview with Martha Nussbaum," REASON, Julian Sanchez, July 15, 2004.

"Patriotism and Cosmopolitanism," THE BOSTON REVIEW, Martha Nussbaum, 1994.
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