Thirteenth Lecture

Thirteenth Lecture - February 4, 2009 Philosophy 4: Thi r...

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February 4, 2009 Philosophy 4: Thirteenth Lecture War, Terrorism, and Torture Does Morality Apply to War? Richard A. Wasserstom War and Moral Nihilism: - Central Issue: Some have contended that judgments of morality have no place in assessments of war o Involvement in war is neither immoral or unjust because the use of moral terms in this context is either naive or meaningless or inapplicable - This claim (that morality has no place in our assessments of war) is ambiguous. There are three different sorts of claims that one might be making when they make this claim: o Descriptive The claim that “in matters of war morality has no place” is the factual claim that matters relating to war are in fact decided on grounds other than moral criteria (like national interest, expediency, etc.) A descriptive claim is a claim about how things in fact are; it describes Does not deny that morality applies in principle, just that it has not in fact been applied o Analytic The claim that “in matters of war morality has no place” is a claim about the definition of war; essentially it means that by definition war excludes morality
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This note was uploaded on 11/07/2010 for the course PHIL PHIL 4 taught by Professor Huizenga during the Winter '09 term at UCSB.

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Thirteenth Lecture - February 4, 2009 Philosophy 4: Thi r...

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