(Discussion of Tanner Lecture 1) Nicholas Lemann: The Assault on Institutions

Thu January 16th 2014, 10:00am - 12:00pm
Event Sponsor
Center for Ethics in Society, Office of the President

This is a discussion of Lecture 1 from the previous night's Tanner Lecture, "The Assault on Institutions."

In "The Transaction Society: Origins and Consequences," Lemann plans to propose that American society fundamentally changed in the second half of the twentieth century from privileging institutions, interacting in a pluralistic fashion, to privileging transactions. The first lecture will be an intellectual history tracing the broad turn against strong institutions as a social ideal, in favor of efficiency and broad notions of fairness and justice. The second lecture will be more specific about how this change in ethos manifested itself in actual social, legal, and economic arrangements, and will discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the social regime resulting from these changes.

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