I listen to podcasts from BBC radio, and I recently heard philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah discussing the role of honour in the 21st century. Appiah’s interests lie primarily in moral progress, and how that progress is made.
The Chinese tradition of footbinding had existed for centuries, but within a generation, it was completely eradicated. How did this happen? Appiah argues that reason, morality and religion are not enough to spur moral revolutions. Morally repugnant practices are changed only when they come into conflict with honour.
I can't wait to delve into it! Yes, I’m going to spend my “down time” reading about footbinding, the Atlantic slave trade, and the aristocratic custom of duelling. That’s just how I roll.
The next time you hear about a great new book, go online and place a hold through our website. That way, you’ll beat me to the punch!