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Philosopher Nussbaum wins US$1m Berggruen Prize

Philosopher and classicist Martha Nussbaum has won the US$1 million (A$1.4m) Berggruen Prize, which is awarded annually to ‘thinkers whose ideas have profoundly shaped human self-understanding and advancement in a rapidly changing world’.

Nussbaum is the author or editor of more than 40 books, including The Fragility of Goodness (CUP), Sex and Social Justice (OUP), Hiding from Humanity: Disgust, Shame, and the Law (Princeton University Press), and Frontiers of Justice: Disability, Nationality, Species Membership (Harvard University Press). She has written on topics including the power of literature to explore the place of emotions in moral and political life, the nature of vulnerability, and the connection between classical literature and contemporary society.

Her work on the capability approach to welfare economics has been used by the United Nations for its Human Development Index. The approach suggests that improved quality of life for a country’s population should not be measured by its increased gross domestic product, but rather by an economic basis that is focused on people, including improved life expectancy and increases in education.

‘Martha C Nussbaum is rather heroic in the way that she transcends academia,’ said Berggruen Institute founder and chairman Nicolas Berggruen. ‘She has taken her transformative and relatable work into public debates about the key questions of national and global political significance. By challenging us to look closely at the capability of humans, as well as our emotions, she has given us strategies for hope and connectivity.’

Selected from more than 500 nominees and a shortlist of five, Nussbaum will receive her prize at a ceremony in New York in December.

For more information about the prize, see the website.

 

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Category: International news