Forthcoming May 2021 • paper
This book contends that the crises of well-being, distress, and dysfunction currently afflicting the legal profession, other professions, and our politics can best be addressed by encouraging people to pursue a flourishing life of meaning and purpose in communities of excellence and virtue. It draws centrally upon the work of Alasdair MacIntyre, arguably the most famous living moral philosopher and notorious for his critique of liberal democracy, its capitalist, large-scale market economy, and hyper-individualism in late Modernity. Constructing a fishing village called Piscopolis as a central image and theoretical ideal, the book integrates relevant aspects of MacIntyre’s Thomistic-Aristotelianism into a clear, comprehensible, and original synthesis that also significantly expands and supplements MacIntyre’s theoretical approach, including insights drawn from Heideggerian phenomenology. It examines the legal polis, the “fishing village of the law” called Juropolis, to illustrate how the Piscopolis ideal challenges members of the professions and suggests how the ideal might be deployed more broadly to organically transform the liberal democratic state into a “republic of virtue.” With the Covid-19 pandemic starkly revealing the need for such transformation, the book will interest both the MacIntyrean expert and novice alike and appeal broadly to moral and political philosophers, ethicists, theologians, legal professionals, and scholarly lay readers.