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Justice: Season 1

1x02 The Case for Cannibalism

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  • 2011-02-02T01:30:00+00:00 on PBS
  • 30 mins
  • United States
  • English
  • Documentary
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In the second in a series of lectures drawn from Harvard professor Michael Sandel's famous undergraduate course on justice, he introduces the British utilitarian philosopher Jeremy Bentham, with reference to an infamous 19th century legal case from Victorian England - the shipwreck of the Mignonette.
After nineteen days lost at sea, the ship's captain decided to kill the weakest amongst the survivors - the young cabin boy - so that the rest could feed on his blood and body. The case sets up a classroom debate about the moral validity of utilitarianism and its doctrine of the right thing to do being whatever produces the greatest good for the greatest number.

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