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Sep  29

Larissa MacFarquhar – Strangers Drowning


What does it mean to devote yourself wholly to helping others? We honor high ideals, but when we call people “do-gooders” there is skepticism in it, even hostility. How much should we help, and how much can we help? Is it right to care for strangers even at the expense of those we are closest to? In “Strangers Drowning,” Larissa MacFarquhar tells stories of people living lives of extreme ethical commitment: their stubborn integrity and their compromises; their bravery and their recklessness; their joys and defeats and wrenching dilemmas.

Event Details:


Sponsored by the McCoy Family Center for Ethics in Society

Date: Tuesday, September 29
Time: 7:00 pm
Location: Stanford Law School, Room 190


Larissa MacFarquhar is a staff writer at The New Yorker magazine, where she has written profiles of Barack Obama, Hillary Mantel, John Ashbery, and Aaron Swartz, among many others. Her book “Strangers Drowning: Grappling with Impossible Idealism, Drastic Choices, and the Overpowering Urge to Help,” will be published by Penguin in September, 2015.

“Strangers Drowning” will be available for purchase at the event. The author will be signing books after her talk.