David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Civil disobedience is a form of protest in which protestors deliberately violate a law. Classically, they violate the law they are protesting, such as segregation or draft laws, but sometimes they violate other laws which they find unobjectionable, such as trespass or traffic laws. Most activists who perform civil disobedience are scrupulously nonviolent, and willingly accept legal penalties. The purpose of civil disobedience can be to publicize an unjust law or a just cause; to appeal to the conscience of the public; to force negotiation with recalcitrant officials; to "clog the machine" (in Thoreau's phrase) with political prisoners; to get into court where one can challenge the constitutionality of a law; to exculpate oneself, or to put an end to one's personal complicity in the injustice which flows from obedience to unjust law —or some combination of these. While civil disobedience in a broad sense is as old as the Hebrew midwives' defiance of Pharaoh, most of the moral and legal theory surrounding it, as well as most of the instances in the street, have been inspired by Thoreau, Gandhi, and King. In this article we will focus on the moral arguments for and against its use in a democracy.
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
No categories specified
(categorize this paper)
|Through your library||Only published papers are available at libraries|
Similar books and articles
Fred R. Berger (1970). 'Law and Order' and Civil Disobedience. Inquiry 13 (1-4):254 – 273.
Vinit Haksar (1976). Rawls and Gandhi on Civil Disobedience. Inquiry 19 (1-4):151 – 192.
Michael Martin (1990). Ecosabotage and Civil Disobedience. Environmental Ethics 12 (4):291-310.
Jennifer Welchman (2001). Is Ecosabotage Civil Disobedience? Philosophy and Geography 4 (1):97 – 107.
Kimberley Brownlee (2004). Features of a Paradigm Case of Civil Disobedience. Res Publica 10 (4):337-351.
Peter Jones (2004). Introduction: Law and Disobedience. Res Publica 10 (4):319-336.
Brian J. Huschle (2002). Cyber Disobedience. International Journal of Applied Philosophy 16 (1):69-83.
Kimberley Brownlee (2012). Conscience and Conviction: The Case for Civil Disobedience. Oxford University Press.
William Smith (2004). Democracy, Deliberation and Disobedience. Res Publica 10 (4):353-377.
Sophie Turenne (2004). Judicial Responses to Civil Disobedience: A Comparative Approach. Res Publica 10 (4):379-399.
Joseph Raz (1979). The Authority of Law: Essays on Law and Morality. Oxford University Press.
Edward H. Madden (1968). Civil Disobedience and Moral Law in Nineteenth-Century American Philosophy. Seattle, University of Washington Press.
Brian E. Butler (2010). Where Is the Civil in the Invisible Man's Disobedience? In Harold Bloom Blake Hobby (ed.), Bloom's Literary Themes: Civil Disobedience.
Henry David Thoreau (1996). Political Writings. Cambridge University Press.
Added to index2010-12-22
Total downloads58 ( #21,697 of 1,008,715 )
Recent downloads (6 months)2 ( #39,209 of 1,008,715 )
How can I increase my downloads?