War involves widespread killing and maiming. For this reason, it is of utmost importance to understand the morality that governs the conduct for and in war. Besides its practical importance, war also raises many interesting philosophical issues. In this course we will explore some prominent aspects of just war theory. We will explore questions such as when is it permissible to start war? what duties do combatants have while warring? are the principles that govern war the same principles that govern peace? If not, what explains this asymmetry?
At the end of the course the student shall be able to:
Understand the key positions within contemporary debates in just war theory.
Produce critical and well-structured arguments in moral philosophy.
Balance and contrast the weakness and strengths of different positions in contemporary debates in just war theory.
Summarise arguments clearly and succinctly
All students must read the core reading before the lectures and seminars.
Attendance is compulsory. You need at least 90% of attendance to get a grade.
MA students must submit two 1,500 words essay and make an in-class presentation. PhD students must submit three 1,500 words and make an in-class presentation.
Grades will be awarded as follows:
for MA students: Presentation: 25%, participation 15%, first paper 25%, second paper 35%.
For PhD students: Presentation: 25%, participation 15%, first paper 15%, second paper 20%, third paper 25%
Essays are due on the date they are due! Extensions will be granted only in special circumstances. Organise your time!
Academic dishonesty will be severely penalised. Don’t plagiarise!!