In this course we will reflect on the moral standing of the market. We will discuss the moral considerations that speak in favor or against organizing economic cooperation through markets, and we will examine in which sense and to what extent the market poses a moral sphere sui generis that entails its own moral requirements and licences. The topics recurring in this debate concern the importance of personal liberty, contract, and ownership, and the potential menaces of commodification, exploitation, and alienation. The readings and the timetable will be provided in the first session. Participation in this course does not require any specific knowledge or background. However, it does require the willingness to prepare the weekly readings and to engage in the discussions in the course.

For those who are interested in looking into the field in advance I suggest:

Herzog, Lisa, "Markets", The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy edited by Edward N. Zalta, <>.


Buchanan, A. E., 1985, Ethics, Efficiency, and the Market, Towota, NJ: Rowman & Allanheld