International Political Theory

Kant and the End of War

A Critique of Just War Theory

Authors: Williams, Howard

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  • Paperback edition includes a new preface with a discussion of recent examples 

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About this book

The paperback edition (published in 2016) includes a new preface with a discussion of recent examples.

Kant stands almost unchallenged as one of the major thinkers of the European Enlightenment. This book brings the ideas of his critical philosophy to bear on one of the leading political and legal questions of our age: under what circumstances, if any, is recourse to war legally and morally justifiable? This issue was strikingly brought to the fore by the 2003 war in Iraq. The book critiques the tradition of just war thinking and suggests how international law and international relations can be viewed from an alternative perspective that aims at a more pacific system of states. Instead of seeing the theory of just war as providing a stabilizing context within which international politics can be carried out, Williams argues that the theory contributes to the current unstable international condition. The just war tradition is not the silver lining in a generally dark horizon but rather an integral feature of the dark horizon of current world politics. Kant was one of the first and most profound thinkers to moot this understanding of just war reasoning and his work remains a crucial starting point for a critical theory of war today.

About the authors

Howard Williams is Emeritus Professor in Political Theory, Aberystwyth University and Honorary Distinguished Professor in the School of Law and Politics, Cardiff University. He has written numerous monographs on political philosophy, and he is currently editor of the journal Kantian Review.

Reviews

'William's book combines careful but readable exegesis of Kant's texts with a close critical engagement both with the scholarship of other Kantians and the arguments of the just war theorists he seeks to challenge...it is a substantial and important contribution to current debates in international ethics and political theory.' - Christopher Finlay, University of Birmingham, International Affairs


Table of contents (9 chapters)

Table of contents (9 chapters)
  • Introduction

    Pages 1-9

    Williams, Howard

  • The Motif of War in Kant’s Critical Philosophy

    Pages 10-39

    Williams, Howard

  • Kant and Just War Theory: The Problem Outlined

    Pages 40-55

    Williams, Howard

  • Perpetual Peace and the Case against Just War Theory

    Pages 56-71

    Williams, Howard

  • The Metaphysics of Morals and the Case for Just War Theory

    Pages 72-90

    Williams, Howard

Buy this book

eBook £39.99
price for United Kingdom (gross)
  • ISBN 978-0-230-36022-8
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF, EPUB
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover £79.99
price for United Kingdom (gross)
  • ISBN 978-0-230-24420-7
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
Softcover £49.99
price for United Kingdom (gross)
  • ISBN 978-1-349-31885-8
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.

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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Kant and the End of War
Book Subtitle
A Critique of Just War Theory
Authors
Series Title
International Political Theory
Copyright
2012
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan UK
Copyright Holder
Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited
eBook ISBN
978-0-230-36022-8
DOI
10.1057/9780230360228
Hardcover ISBN
978-0-230-24420-7
Softcover ISBN
978-1-349-31885-8
Series ISSN
2662-6039
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XVIII, 204
Topics