Machiavelli advised princes to be both lion and fox and we are all too aware that to judge a book by its cover is naive at best if not dangerous. But is it fair to demand that we wear our hearts on our moral sleeves? If a man be brave on the day who cares if he’s a knave by night? Do we really have to say only what we mean and mean what we say? Can’t we lead private lives very different from how we appear in public? And shouldn’t that privacy be respected? If so, what place for public condemnation of immoral individuals? Is what you think right or should you think what is right?
Introduced by Dolan Cummings, associate fellow, Academy of Ideas; editor, Culture Wars; editor, Debating Humanism; co-founder, Manifesto Club
"The 2012 Battle of Ideas at the Barbican was the best ever. It was bustling with interesting people, punchy debates and new ideas. I can't wait for 2013's."
Philippe Legrain, adviser to José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission