Introduction to the second edition
Just war, past and present
in The ethics of war
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Though the specific criticisms vary in focus and emphasis, all address the shortcomings of what is referred to as 'traditional' or 'classical' just war theory. At the heart of David Rodin's assessment of just war thinking is a powerful critique of the 'domestic analogy', that is, of the justificatory role of the idea of self-defence in ethical reasoning about war. In keeping with a form of analytic ethics, the main focus of revisionist just war thought is on conceptual analysis with the aim of producing a set of rules or principles which can then be applied to war. The adoption of a 'dispositional' view of ethical life, in which moral character and moral culture play a decisive part, widens and transforms the ethics of war. Past thinkers were much more economical in their deployment of rules than contemporary just war analysts.

The ethics of war

Second edition

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