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Publisher's Summary

Brought to you by Penguin.  

These are dangerous times for democracy. We live in an age of winners and losers, where the odds are stacked in favour of the already fortunate. Stalled social mobility and entrenched inequality give the lie to the promise that 'you can make it if you try'. And the consequence is a brew of anger and frustration that has fuelled populist protest, with the triumph of Brexit and election of Donald Trump.  

Michael J. Sandel argues that to overcome the polarised politics of our time, we must rethink the attitudes toward success and failure that have accompanied globalisation and rising inequality. Sandel highlights the hubris a meritocracy generates among the winners and the harsh judgement it imposes on those left behind. He offers an alternative way of thinking about success - more attentive to the role of luck in human affairs, more conducive to an ethic of humility and more hospitable to a politics of the common good.

©2020 Michael J. Sandel (P)2020 Penguin Audio

What listeners say about The Tyranny of Merit

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  • Mr R Davies
  • 03-11-2020

So important for our time of tumult

If only everyone could read this book, the world would have a chance of organising itself in a fair fairer and just way. Brilliant in every way:

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  • Seretse Small
  • 10-10-2020

thought provoking and inspiring

loved it! will listen again. it has challenged my notions of systems of reward and success.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-10-2020

Interesting point

This is the 4th books I read following Justice What is the right thing to do?, what money can’t buy? and Public Philosophy and this book by Mr. Sandel. When we look back in the past and it’s become even more evident now that society seem to praise on the more educated and success is measure on the level of wealth and opportunities to govern the less unfortunate and low income, in which would create even more inequality and income gap, to put Meritocracy in perspectives, we all need to understand the limit of merit system and how we look at our success that is suggested in this book, but in term of practical, it would be other challenging !

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  • Stuart Robertson
  • 05-11-2020

a unified theory of discourse as we know it

such a phenomenally good concept, I think the tyranny of merit beautifully explains european and American politics now. I would love to recommend it to friends but unfortunately the book is too repetitive and solutions to the problems explained are weak. I wish he had a better editor! just listen to his interview on the podcast reasons to be cheerful you'll save 10 hours

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  • Anonymous User
  • 14-11-2020

Thought provoking and rewarding

I’m new to Audible so I don’t know if it’s usual for the author to read but Michael Sandel’s voice is so distinctive that it’s an essential element to my overall assessment. I found his thesis struck a profound cord with me and one that society as a whole should be clamouring to hear. One needs to concentrate of course but he lays out his argument methodically and calmly by which I mean that his tone is neutral, not judgement as I at first expected, and won me round convincingly over the course of the book. His analysis makes eminent sense of many events of recent past and gave structure to my own unarticulated thoughts.

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  • K. Charman
  • 04-10-2020

Towering, complete, perfect

Every academic, professional, cosmopolitan, graduate, higher than average income earner (or should we say “taker”, should read this book in front of a mirror and then ask whose fault it is that Brexit, Trump and other forms of populism are unravelling liberal democracies.

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  • Tony Fitzgerald
  • 12-09-2020

Well written critique of meritocracy

Sandel's book is a lucid discussion of the 'rhetoric of rising'. it's an informed critique of meritocracy/credentialism and its role in the rise of right-wing populism. Sandel's reading is to be commended too.

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  • Mark
  • 10-11-2020

Encourages fundamental perspective reset.

Deeply learned and humane analysis of how we went so wrong and what to do next. Dismantles our understanding of social worth and economic justice. Meritocracy is found to be bad for the losers, bad for the winners and corrosive to any shared sense of the common good.

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  • James Tupper
  • 04-11-2020

Resonant

I listened to and riled against Michael Sandel, Elif Shafak, David Goodhart and Amol Rajan rethinking meritocracy, division and community on BBC Radio 4's "Start the week" programme back in early September. But I'm so glad to have listened to this book. I stand enlightened and corrected. Michael Sandel's book has helped me recognise the extent and nature of my hubris and that of many other higher education credentialed folk. What next?

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 14-10-2020

exquisite

A poignant and necessary treatise for our time. Few thinkers can so vividly articulate our condition

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