Debate: Socialism Is Preferable to Capitalism

April 08, 2020
Sheraton Commander Hotel, Cambridge, MA
5:00 p.m.

About the Debate

The near implosion of financial capitalism during the crisis of 2008 has had lasting effects, especially on millennials.

What was thought to be a technical “liquidity” crisis in the banking sector spiraled out of control and impacted the livelihoods of ordinary people. Over a decade later, there is still debate about what really happened, why some correctives and not others were applied, who was to blame, and so on.

This fallout has led others to raise more radical questions, radical in the original sense of getting to the root of the matter. Today’s debate takes us in this direction. For the first time in over half a century, probably more, questions as to the best economic system have once again come to be of general interest.

Join Arthur C. Brooks, bestselling author and speaker, and Richard D. Wolff, a renowned Marxian economist, as they debate the pros and cons of socialism and capitalism. Which economic system better promotes freedom, equality, and prosperity?

Tickets are $15 online, $20 at the door. 

Debate Details


5:00 p.m.


5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.


This debate brought to you by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute and the Abigail Adams Institute


Arthur C. Brooks
Arthur C. Brooks

Arthur C. Brooks is Professor of the Practice of Public Leadership at the Harvard Kennedy School and Arthur C. Patterson Faculty Fellow at the Harvard Business School. Before joining the Harvard faculty in July of 2019, he served for ten years as president of the Washington, D.C.-based American Enterprise Institute (AEI), one of the world’s leading think tanks.

Brooks is the author of 11 books, including the national bestsellers “Love Your Enemies” (2019), “The Conservative Heart” (2015), and “The Road to Freedom” (2012). He is also a columnist for the Washington Post, host of the popular podcast “The Arthur Brooks Show,” and subject of the 2019 documentary film “The Pursuit,” now available on Netflix. He gives more than 100 speeches per year around the U.S., Europe, and Asia.

Richard Wolff
Richard D. Wolff

Richard D. Wolff is Professor of Economics Emeritus, University of Massachusetts, Amherst where he taught economics from 1973 to 2008. He is currently a Visiting Professor in the Graduate Program in International Affairs of the New School University, New York City.

Earlier he taught economics at Yale University (1967-1969) and at the City College of the City University of New York (1969-1973). In 1994, he was a Visiting Professor of Economics at the University of Paris (France), I (Sorbonne). Wolff was also regular lecturer at the Brecht Forum in New York City.

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