War and Morality

Citizens’ Rights and Duties

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About the Book

In democratic societies, it is said that wars and military interventions are fought in the name of the citizens of the nation engaged in the conflict. Yet, ordinary citizens, the major stakeholders in war, are seldom provided with as much information for making and acting on their moral decisions about war as they are about many other national issues that affect them. To fill the void, this volume addresses the nature of conscience, various moral norms, a moral decision-making process, and the theoretical and practical issues involved in attempting to avoid war or at least to make it as moral as possible, considering its nature.
By discussing how the morality of war differs from its political, military, economic and legal dimensions, this unique work attempts to enable citizens to make informed decisions about declaring, waging and ending war, and to act on those decisions.
Instructors considering this book for use in a course may request an examination copy here.

About the Author(s)

Michael Cavanagh, a professor of psychology and supervisor of clinical internships at Mount Olive College in North Carolina, has published extensively in the fields of psychology and law enforcement.

Bibliographic Details

Michael Cavanagh
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 207
Bibliographic Info: bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2012
pISBN: 978-0-7864-6988-8
eISBN: 978-0-7864-9083-7
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface     1

Introduction     5

1. Conscience and Making Moral Decisions      11

2. Just War Principles: Nature and Critique      33

3. Other Perspectives on War: Pacifism and Realism      59

4. Virtue Ethics: Civilian and Military Considerations      80

5. Moral Decision-Making: The Cognitive Dimension      104

6. Propaganda, Deceit and Moral Decisions      125

7. Morality and War: Theoretical Issues      147

8. Morality and War: Practical Issues      167

Bibliography      193

Index      199

Book Reviews & Awards

“Informational! Informative! Educational! Challenging! This book is more than a book about war and morality. It is about the rights and duties of all American citizens. With that said, readers from every nation, especially those from democratic ones, will benefit from reading this book. Buy it! This book is informative and well worth reading. It ought to be mandatory reading in all military ethics courses”—H-Net Reviews.