Philosophical Papers (forthcoming)
|Abstract||Just War Theory (JWT) is sometimes seen to have replaced an older “warrior code,” an approach to war which remains poorly understood and dismissively treated in the philosophical literature. This paper builds on recent work on honor in order to address both of these deficiencies. By providing a clear, systematic exposition of what might be termed “Honor War Theory” (HWT), we can make sense of paradigm instances of warrior psychology and behavior, and see that in fact the warrior code is nothing but the martial expression of a much more general honor-based ethos that conceives of rightness in terms of fair competition for prestige. Far from being a “romantic” and “outmoded” approach to war, HWT predicts and illuminates current conflicts and recalcitrant moral intuitions that JWT either rejects or cannot comfortably accommodate. So although it is not recommended as a replacement for JWT, there is good reason think that a fully mature, realistic, and yet properly normative theory of war ethics will incorporate a variety of insights from HWT.|
|Keywords||honor honour just war war ethics|
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