POLS 055. Ethics and International Relations (IR)


Ethical questions are central to the study of international relations. Does justice extend beyond the borders of states? Do we have moral obligations to distant strangers? Do we have an obligation to obey international law? When is war, if ever, just? Who should punish war crimes? In this course we explore the links between international normative theory (what would a just world order look like? how should it be constructed?) and the role norms and ethics actually play in contemporary international relations according to different theoretical perspectives (e.g. realist, constructivist, etc.). Topics include: the nature of ethical reasoning; state sovereignty, national self-determination, and secession; just war, human rights, and intervention; pluralism and cosmopolitanism; Black Lives Matter and international racial justice; transnational environmental responsibility and the ethics of climate change. 
Social sciences.
1 credit.
Eligible for ASIA; PEAC
Spring 2023. Emily Paddon Rhoads.
Catalog chapter: Political Science  
Department website: http://www.swarthmore.edu/political-science


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