Onora O’neill’s breathtaking talent

I am often suspicious of academ-o-stars, but I had one of those moments where I was skimming through a collection writings looking for things for my planning theory and ethics class in a book called A Companion to Ethics, when my eye stopped on the section on ‘Kantian ethics.’ Oh-ho, thinks I, McFly. These entries are about 2500 to 3,000 words. How is anybody going to distill Kant into that many words?

I start reading. My breath is taken away. Kant is by far the most difficult thinker I teach other than Habermas and Rawls, and I feel such a natural affinity for Rawls that he doesn’t count.

I look to see who wrote this tiny little masterpiece: Onora O’Neill. Hoo Boy. How wonderful.