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Renowned philosopher takes on surfing, New Year’s resolution and 80 other everyday things




Professors Jeffrey Sachs and Peter Singer attend Time Magazine's 100 Most Influential People celebration May 8, 2006 in New York City.
Professors Jeffrey Sachs and Peter Singer attend Time Magazine's 100 Most Influential People celebration May 8, 2006 in New York City.
Evan Agostini/Getty Images

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Philosopher Peter Singer is known for his work on effective altruism, arguing not just for the imperative for people to reduce suffering, but that it should be done in the most cost-effective way.

Ethics in the Real World: 82 Brief Essays on Things That Matter
Ethics in the Real World: 82 Brief Essays on Things That Matter
Peter Singer/Princeton University Press

So he’s argued that it is a moral obligation for those living in wealthy nations to give money to charities that help the poor people in the world. But not just any charity, Singer says, but organizations that he thinks give the most bang for the buck, like GiveWells, as well as the 50% League.

He is also a diehard proponent on veganism and animal liberation, and questions the arbitrary privileging of human beings over animals.

In his newest book, “Ethics in the Real World,” Singer tackles 82 topics – including the price of high art, the idea of in vitro meat, and whether robots should have rights – that have seized the world’s imagination today.

Guest:

Peter Singer, a professor of bioethics at Princeton University. He is the author of many books, including his latest “Ethics in the Real World: 82 Brief Essays on Things That Matter” (Princeton University Press, 2016)