p. James Sterba, professor of philosophy and faculty fellow in the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies at the University of Notre Dame, will debate affirmative action with Carl Cohen, professor of philosophy at the University of Michigan, in two presentations this week.
p. “Defending Affirmative Action, Defending Preferences” will be held at 3 p.m. Friday (April 27) and “Race Preference is Neither Wise Nor Just” will be held on Saturday (April 28) at 10 a.m. The presentations, which are free and open to the public, will be held in the Hesburgh Library lounge on campus.
p. The debates are the first step toward producing a “Point/Counterpoint” book series on affirmative action, to be authored by both Sterba and Cohen and published by the Oxford University Press.
p. Sterba has authored more than 150 articles and published 21 books, including “Justice for Here and Now,” which received the 1998 Book of the Year award from the North American Society for Social Philosophy. Sterba’s interests are in the fields of ethics, political philosophy, environmental ethics and the philosophy of peace and justice.
p. Cohen, who specializes in political and moral philosophy and logic, has served as a member of the National Board of Directors of the American Civil Liberties Union and as president of its Michigan affiliate. Using the Freedom of Information Act, he forced the University of Michigan to disclose its records on race preferences given to admission applicants. These revelations have spurred two lawsuits against the university, one for affirmative action and one against. The cases are currently being appealed in federal court.