Wednesday, May 05, 2021, 4:30pm EDT
Nobel Prize–winning economist Amartya Sen joins Carl Marks Professor of International Studies Kaushik Basu for the 2021 Bartels World Affairs Lecture, hosted by Cornell’s Mario Einaudi Center for International Studies.
As the 21st century dawned, many would have said that understanding the need for democracy was the most important change in the world over the preceding 100 years. Yet in the past two decades, democracy has been treated with contempt and hostility in many parts of the world — including countries in the West (such as Hungary, Poland, and others), but also elsewhere.
Dr. Sen believes that it is important to ask why this is happening and how we should deal with it. “Some countries seem to be undergoing a big transition in this respect, and my own country, India, may be a significant example — despite its being often described as the largest democracy in the world, which in some sense it still is,” Dr. Sen said. “As someone who is dismayed by recent developments, I would like to discuss the nature of the problems we may be facing and what can be done about them.”
Dr. Sen’s talk, “Attacks on Democracy,” will kick off a discussion with Cornell faculty and students moderated by Dr. Basu. Edward Cornell Professor of Law Robert Hockett, Edward H. Meyer Professor of Economics Marco Battaglini, and Professor of Philosophy Rachana Kamtekar are among the Cornell faculty who will join Dr. Sen, Dr. Basu, and audience members, including several students, for conversation and Q&A on democratic challenges and the path forward.
Wendy Wolford, Vice Provost for International Affairs and the Robert A. and Ruth E. Polson Professor of Global Development, and Rachel Beatty Riedl, Director of the Mario Einaudi Center for International Studies and the John S. Knight Professor of International Studies, will introduce the discussion. This event is part of the Einaudi Center’s global research theme of democratic resilience.
The Bartels World Affairs Lecture was established in 1984 to foster a broadened worldview among Cornell students, especially undergraduates. The lecture and related events are made possible by the generosity of Henry E. Bartels ’48 and Nancy Horton Bartels ’48.