Honorary doctorate 2019: Professor Martha Nussbaum

Professor and philosopher Martha Nussbaum has developed a new theory about justice based on the so-called capability approach, and she has had a decisive influence on our understanding of equality, diversity and human rights. She has worked with Nobel Prize winner Amartya Sen on defining a UN goal for global welfare which includes health, education and freedom of religion.

Martha Nussbaum is considered one of the world’s leading and most influential thinkers – she is on Forbes’ top 100 list of global thinkers.

She has taught ethics, ancient philosophy and legal philosophy at Harvard University, Brown University and the University of Oxford, and is currently teaching at the University of Chicago. She has received some of the world’s most distinguished academic honorary awards.

Since her breakthrough with The Fragility of Goodnes. Luck and Ethics in Greek Tragedy and Philosophy in 1986, Nussbaum has formulated a philosophy based on extensive studies in classical philosophy, literature and emotions which emphasises that belonging to a community is key to a good life and a fair society.

Martha Nussbaum has visited Aarhus University regularly since she started working with Uffe Juul Jensen, professor of philosophy, 25 years ago. She has also played an important role in the praxis-oriented philosophy that is central to interdisciplinary philosophy research and teaching at Aarhus University.

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