The War on Thugs: Where Do We Go From Here?

Lecture Annual David Hume Lecture on Human Nature

Jason Stanley, Yale University Professor of Philosophy

Jason Stanley

Yale University Professor of Philosophy

In 1972, there were 300,000 American citizens in prison or jail. Now that number is more than 2.4 million, with millions more having their futures destroyed by a criminal justice conviction that makes their mug shots and records available to any potential employer or landlord who can use the internet. There is a bipartisan consensus to address the disaster that has led the United States to become incarceration nation. We must understand some of the factors that led us to the point where we lack empathy for our fellow citizens in order to craft a change in our public culture that will lead us out.  


Jason Stanley is Professor of Philosophy at Yale University. Before coming to Yale in 2013, he was Distinguished Professor in the Department of Philosophy at Rutgers University. He has also been a Professor at the University of Michigan and Cornell University (1995-2000). His Ph.D. was earned in 1995 at the Department of Linguistics and Philosophy at MIT,and he received his B.A. from the State University of New York at Stony Brook in 1990. Professor Stanley has published four books, two in epistemology, one in philosophy of language and semantics, and one in social and political philosophy. His first book is Knowledge and Practical Interests published in 2005 by Oxford University Press. It was the winner of the 2007 American Philosophical Association book prize. Professor Stanley’s second book, Language in Context, also OUP, was published in 2007. This is a collection of his papers in semantics published between 2000 and 2007 on the topic of linguistic communication and context. His third book, Know How, was published in 2011, also with OUP.  Princeton University Press published his most recent book, entitled How Propaganda Works, earlier this year.


The Human Nature Project

Event Poster 2015 Hume Lecture
5:30 PM
Ketchum Library, St. Francis Room

Biddeford Campus

Free and open to the public