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Martha Nussbaum
Citadels of Pride:
Sexual Abuse, Accountability,
and Reconciliation
W. W. Norton & Company, May 2021



In Citadels of Pride, Martha C. Nussbaum shows how sexual abuse and harassment derive from using people as things to one’s own benefit―like other forms of exploitation, they are rooted in the ugly emotion of pride. In the judiciary, the arts, and sports, Nussbaum analyzes how pride perpetuates systemic sexual abuse, narcissism, and toxic masculinity. By analyzing the effects of law and public policy on our ever-evolving definitions of sexual violence, Nussbaum clarifies how gaps in U.S. law allow this violence to proliferate. Citadels of Pride offers a damning indictment of the culture of male power that insulates high-profile abusers from accountability. Yet Nussbaum offers a hopeful way forward, envisioning a future in which, as survivors mobilize to tell their stories and institutions pursue fair and nuanced reform, we might fully recognize the equal dignity of all people. Reviewer Martha Minow notes, "Martha C. Nussbaum brings unflinching clarity and wisdom to illuminate shame and pride, the operations of power and retribution surrounding sexual violence and intimidation. Nussbaum’s distinctive fusion of law and philosophy exposes failures of recent reforms and points toward constructive future paths."

Read Martha Nussbaum’s lecture, “Sexual Violence: Accountability in a Celebrity Culture.”

In Citadels of Pride, Martha C. Nussbaum shines a light on long-standing and deep-rooted issues of sexual harassment and assault that continue to plague big-time sports and lays out a provocative plan for controlling institutions to become leaders in effecting change. Not everyone will agree with her recommendations, but this book should be mandatory reading for anyone who cares deeply about the need for reform.”
Adam Silver
commissioner of the
National Basketball Association



Martha C. Nussbaum is the Ernst Freund Distinguished Service Professor of Law and Ethics at the University of Chicago, appointed in the law school and philosophy department. She is the author of numerous books and articles on moral, legal, and political philosophy, and recipient of many awards, including the Berggruen Prize, one of the world’s most significant recognitions for public intellectuals. 

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