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September 24 , 2008

Identity and Violence: The Illusion of Destiny (Issues of Our Time)


“One of the few world intellectuals on whom we may rely to make sense out of our existential confusion.”—Nadine Gordimer

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Mismeasuring Our Lives

In February of 2008, amid the looming global financial crisis, President Nicolas Sarkozy of France asked Nobel Prize–winning economists Joseph Stiglitz and Amartya Sen, along with the distinguished French economist Jean Paul Fitoussi, to establish a commission of leading economists to study whether Gross Domestic Product (GDP)-the most widely…

In this sweeping philosophical work, Amartya Sen proposes that the murderous violence that has riven our society is driven as much by confusion as by inescapable hatred. Challenging the reductionist division of people by race, religion, and class, Sen presents an inspiring vision of a world that can be made to move toward peace as firmly as it has spiraled in recent years toward brutality and war.

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