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The Marshall Arts & Humanities Series: The Meritocracy Trap

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The Meritocracy Trap

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You are invited to a Zoom webinar. Please register via Eventbrite in advance.

Please click the link below to join the webinar: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85669833473?pwd=Ri9rbnhWWVF2MlhBd1EzTDVScVE1Zz09

PLEASE SUBMIT QUESTIONS IN ADVANCE to: events@marshallscholars.org

A webcast dialogue with Professor Daniel Markovits (1991) and Mr. Pratap Bhanu Mehta on Friday, February 19th from 9:30 - 10:30 AM ET / 8:00 - 9:00 PM (India Standard Time) to discuss concepts raised in The Meritocracy Trap.

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His current book, The Meritocracy Trap (Penguin Press, 2019), develops a sustained attack on American meritocracy. The meritocratic ideal—that people should get ahead based on their own accomplishments rather than their parents’ social class—has become our age’s literal common sense. Markovits argues, however, that both up and down the social ladder, meritocracy is a sham.  Today, meritocracy has become exactly what it was invented to defeat—a new aristocracy, only now based on schooling rather than breeding.  Upward mobility has become a fantasy, and the embattled middle class is more likely to sink into the working poor than to rise into the professional elite.  At the same time, meritocracy ensnares even those who manage to claw their way to the top, trapping rich adults in a pitiless competition, which requires them to work with crushing intensity, exploiting their expensive educations in order to extract a return.

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The event will be the ninth in our monthly Marshall Arts and Humanities Series: hour-long discussions via zoom with Marshall scholars and invited guests featuring poetry, music, history, books and ideas.

The audience will be invited to share their questions in advance by writing, and would have ~15 minutes reserved for direct Q&A at the end of the 30 minute discussion. Pending your consent, we archive and post the video on our website and youtube channel.

ABOUT

Daniel Markovits (1991) is Guido Calabresi Professor of Law at Yale Law School and Founding Director of the Center for the Study of Private Law.  

Markovits works in the philosophical foundations of private law, moral and political philosophy, and behavioral economics. He publishes in a range of disciplines, including in Science, The American Economic Review, and The Yale Law Journal.

After earning a B.A. in Mathematics, summa cum laude from Yale University, Markovits received a British Marshall Scholarship to study in England, where he was awarded an M.Sc. in Econometrics and Mathematical Economics from the L.S.E. and a B.Phil. and D.Phil. in Philosophy from the University of Oxford. Markovits then returned to Yale to study law and, after clerking for the Honorable Guido Calabresi, joined the faculty at Yale.

Pratap Bhanu Mehta has held several teaching positions. He was a Professor at NYU School of Law, a Visiting Professor of Government at Harvard University, Associate Professor of Government and of Social Studies at Harvard, and for a brief period, Professor of Philosophy and of Law and Governance at Jawaharlal Nehru University.

He was Member-Convenor of the Prime Minister of India's National Knowledge Commission, Member of the Supreme Court appointed Lyngdoh Committee on elections in Indian Universities, and has contributed to a number of reports for leading Government of India and International Agencies. He was on the Board of Governors of International Development Research Centre. He was Vice-Chair of the World Economic Forum's Council on Global Governance. He has also served on the Board of NIPFP, NCAER and NIID.

Mr. Mehta is on the editorial board of journals such as the American Political Science Review and Journal of Democracy. He received the 2010 Malcolm Adiseshiah Award and the 2011 Infosys Prize for Social Sciences (Political Science and International Relations).

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