By Paul Woodruff
We are living in a global the place CEOs provide themselves million buck bonuses whilst their businesses cross bankrupt and usual staff are laid off; the place athletes make hundreds of thousands whereas academics fight to outlive; an international, in brief, the place rewards are frequently unfairly meted out. within the Ajax issue, Paul Woodruff examines one in all modern day so much urgent ethical concerns: how you can distribute rewards and public attractiveness with no harmful the social cloth. How may still we honor these whose habit and fulfillment is key to our total good fortune? Is it reasonable or correct to lavish rewards at the megastar on the rate of the hardworking rank-and-file? How can we distinguish an neutral equity from what's really simply? Woodruff builds his resolution to those questions round the historical clash among Ajax and Odysseus over the armor of the slain warrior Achilles. King Agamemnon arranges a speech contest to choose the difficulty. Ajax, the unswerving workhorse, loses the competition, and the important armor, to Odysseus, the brilliantly misleading strategist who will lead the Greeks to victory. Deeply insulted, Ajax is going on a rampage and commits suicide, and in his rage we see the resentment of each unswerving employee who has been omitted in prefer of these who're extra proficient, or whose abilities are extra hugely valued. How may still we care for the "Ajax dilemma"? Woodruff argues that whereas we will be able to by no means create an ideal method for dispensing simply rewards, we will be able to realize the fundamental position that knowledge, compassion, moderation, and appreciate needs to play if we're to revive the fundamental experience of justice on which all groups rely. This brief, considerate publication, written with Woodruff's attribute attractiveness, investigates essentially the most bitterly divisive matters in American at the present time.
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Extra info for The Ajax Dilemma: Justice, Fairness, and Rewards
Achilles has been the great hope of the Greeks, but now he too is dead, shot through the heel, the only place he can be hurt. His armor is to be a prize for the finest soldier in the Greek army. A trophy beyond price, this armor is spectacular. The god Hephaestus made it of precious metals in his workshop on Olympus. 17 18 The Story of Ajax Two candidates come forward, Ajax and Odysseus. Each makes a strong claim for the armor. But there is only one prize. Only one soldier can be the finest, the most valuable.
I am told that you have sent troops to arrest him. I hear also that he has gone to the shore to make his peace with the gods. And, as he promises, to make peace with you. Now here is the hard question: When he is captured, what do you plan to do? What did you intend when you sent out your men to arrest him? His death of course, in the end. A public stoning. A public shaming of his body afterward? I agree, that is precisely what justice and tradition require. The hard question is how to go about this so that the army agrees with us.
I need time to consult the elders. But I promise you, let Zeus be my witness, I will give you what you deserve,” I said. “No less and no more. ” He turned his back on me and walked away. The army dispersed in silence. After the Contest: Tecmessa’s Night Visit to the Generals I was terrified when my husband came home and sat outside staring back at the line of ships that led away toward Agamemnon’s shelter. He would not eat or drink. I had heard the gossip. Don’t think we don’t know what the men are doing.