Special Issue: Ethics and International Relations
FROM AN ETHICS OF INTEGRATION TO AN ETHICS OF PARTICIPATION: CITIZENSHIP AND THE FUTURE OF THE EUROPEAN UNION Richard Bellamy and Alex Warleigh.
European integration requires new normative foundations. Shaped by a largely instrumental ethics of integration, today's European Union sits uneasily between a Eurofederation and a union of nation states, and is mired in a substantive if easily exaggerated 'democratic deficit'. This hybridity need not be an insurmountable problem. Indeed, it could be an asset. However, to realise its potential to combine people's sub-state, state, and trans-state allegiances involves a normative shift in the unification process. Concretely, the traditional elite-driven dynamic must be complemented by an ethics of participation that grants a greater role to EU citizens.
Envisaged as a deliberative process through which citizens can negotiate solutions to conflicts of values and concerns, such an innovation will help reconcile community specific duties with a more cosmopolitan regard for justice beyond borders. A cosmopolitan communitarian model of European citizenship, that draws on neo-republican conceptions of freedom and government, gives normative coherence and legitimacy to the emergent multi-level European polity. From this perspective, the EU's novel mix of political and legal systems and actors, and increasingly variable terms of membership and policy adoption and implementation, no longer appear hopelessly muddled. Instead they offer a means of reconciling the diversity and handling the complexity of modern societies.
THE GLOBALISATION OF PUBLIC HEALTH ETHICS? Douglas Bettcher and Derek Yach.
This article contends that public heath ethics are becoming increasingly globalised. The ethics of health development intersect with other global issues, such as environmental degradation and poverty, and thus, represent a core component of sustainable development strategies. An analysis of several ethical issues in public health demonstrates that ethical concerns transcend state borders, and therefore, do not conform to conventional notions of state sovereignty. Furthermore, the ethical debates outlined in this paper point towards an increasing interdependence of public health risks and opportunities, and the need for 'good governance systems for health' which link together the political will and action of diverse sectors and partners at all levels from civil society to the global community.
WHY FIGHT: HUMANITARIANISM, PRINCIPLES AND POST-STRUCTURALISM David Campbell.
The reception of poststructuralist thought in Anglo-American circles, including the discipline of International Relations, has been more often than not marked by the belief it offers no affirmative possibilities for ethics and politics. Based in large part on Habermas's equation of post-modern thought and neoconservative politics, this conventional wisdom is encapsulated in Habermas's challenge to Foucault: "why fight at all?"
This paper takes up the challenge to respond to this provocation by articulating the ethico-political rationale which inheres in poststructuralist thought, and illustrating how that rationale - organised around the affirmation of 'life' and the struggle for and on behalf of alterity - can and does inform international political practice. Animated by debates about the context of crisis and the need for new codes, norms or principles in the domain of "humanitarianism," this paper outlines how this concept, especially through its invocation of a liberal humanism, can be reworked to better address the ethico-political challenges engendered by crisis.
THE POSSIBILITY OF A COSMOPOLITAN ETHICAL ORDER BASED ON THE IDEA OF UNIVERSAL HUMAN RIGHTS John Charvet.
Cosmopolitan ethics in contemporary Western thought is standardly individualistic and egalitarian, based on a conception of the equal worth of free persons. It is fashionable to seek to ground this conception through a contractarian formula as to what persons can reasonably accept. The underlying idea, however, is that of the dignity of the individual human being. This idea is enshrined in the UNUDHR. Most states have made a legal commitment to this declaration and its accompanying covenants, yet some reject the Western liberal-individualist understanding of these rights, affirming non-Western interpretations. These in turn are standardly rejected by Western thinkers on the grounds that they are conceptions of human duties, not rights, or that they are not the rights of human beings as such but of persons as members of a community. It is argued that these criticisms of non-Western conceptions are unsound.
The issue then becomes one of which view is to be preferred. It is shown that the choice turns on the priority to be given to equal freedom in the determination of a valid order of rights and duties. Non-Western conceptions restrict individual freedom on grounds other than the requirements of an equal freedom, e.g. the commands of God, and hence are more restrictive of individual freedom than the liberal-individualist conception. While it is not shown here that the liberal conception is to be preferred to the non-liberal, it is argued that there can be an overlapping consensus on the liberal view as the public norm for international society. The liberal view can be accepted from the different ethical standpoints of the various world belief-systems as the rule for their purely public-political life, provided that they all accept the fundamental importance of freedom in an individual's adherence to a particular community of belief.
CRIMINALISING SOCIAL AND POLITICAL VIOLENCE INTERNATIONALLY Michael Dillon.
The problem of defining moral culpability, especially for violence, is inextricably linked to the problem of defining 'life' itself. In contesting the current ways in which social and political violence is being criminalised internationally through the resurrection of the Nuremberg principle of individual responsibility for war crimes, this paper does not contest answerability as such. Rather, it contests the 'life' that criminalisation's account of answerability invokes; specifically, the jurisprudence of criminalised subjectification.
The point is not to argue that individuals are released from responsibility for what they do because they are necessarily historical individuals at play in the play of power relations that is politics, although they are. It is to insist, conversely, on the necessity of locating that responsibility within the historical and political processes of which it is a part in order to insist on the necessity of always having to bring effective political and historical critique to bear upon those processes. The criminalising of social and political violence internationally seeks to establish a moral order curbing the incidence and ferocity of violence by bringing it under the authority of some transcendent or supra-circumstantial order, but it has done little to confine the spread and destructiveness of violence.
It powerfully invokes a moral and political order, and an ideal of answerability, that even on its own account is radically insufficient to social and political life locally and globally. Indeed, it is implicated in the very processes productive of modern violence and the progressive disappearance of intelligible politics associated with them. That complicity arises through the definition of life that criminalisation shares with the practices of what the paper calls global liberal governance.
That way the humanitarianism sympathies of criminalisation become increasingly conditional upon and deeply implicated in the contested effects of global liberal governance without developing a thinking politically in respect of them. A highly conditional humanitarianism intimately allied to the opening up of markets, the casualisation of labour, the globalisation of production, the extension of liberal governance, and the conduct of strategic policy is clearly also in operation in the global liberal governance of which criminalisation of social and political violence internationally forms an integral part. This stimulates a powerful scepticism about humanitarian intervention and criminalisation of violence internationally.
THE QUESTION OF THE LIMIT: DESECURITISATION AND THE AESTHETICS OF HORROR IN POLITICAL REALISM Jef Huysmans.
Desecuritisation - or, the unmaking of the securitisation - of migration, is a critical strategy which should make it possible to relocate the question of migration to a context of ethico-political judgement in which one does not seek to found the political on the basis of an existential threat. This article contributes to a better understanding of the ethico-political problematique this 'relocation' addresses by rendering explicit the central ethico-political issue which is born out of the securitisation of migration. More specifically, I look at this question by interpreting the political significance of an existential threat in a Schmittean rendering of the political. The key ethico-political question which arises from this interpretations is whether one wants to integrate free individuals into a political community on the basis of a passage to the limit and the political aesthetics of horror it implies.
RESTYLING THE SUBJECT OF RESPONSIBILITY IN INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS Vivienne Jabri.
The article combines the later works of Michel Foucault with Julia Kristeva's writings to rethink the 'subject' of responsibility in international relations. In developing Foucault's conception of ethics through Kristeva's psychoanalytically informed notion of the 'stranger within', the article places the question of subjectivity at the heart of discourses concerned with ethics in international relations. In seeking to move the terms of debate beyond the epistemological and ontological certainties which confine ethics to the realm of inter-state relations, the article argues for an aesthetic ethical position which sees self- constitution and self-transfiguration as a starting point for a postpositivist ethical agenda in our discipline. An aesthetic ethics that has relevance for international relations incorporates a view of the self as having a capacity to reinvent her or his mode of being as a work of art into an exploration of the self's relation with its constitutive 'other'.
ONE STEP FORWARD, TWO STEPS BACK: CRITICAL THEORY AS THE LATEST EDITION OF LIBERAL IDEALISM Beate Jahn.
This article provides an immanent critique of Critical Theory and argues that instead of analysing concrete phenomena in their historical and social totality Critical Theory considers ideas in abstraction from their social role and constructs speculative histories instead of analysing real or imagined ones. As a result the universal ethics propagated by the Critical Theorists turns out to be a rather particular strand of European thought with a long history of justifying colonialism and imperialism.
'THE POWER OF THE PEN': LIBERALISM'S ETHICAL DYNAMIC AND WORLD POLITICS John MacMillan.
While the role of 'publicity' in establishing a mechanism of ethical development is axiomatic to liberal political theory, its actual and potential significance as an agency for the ethical development of world politics is largely under-appreciated. However, recent cases such as the Brent Spar campaign, the landmines treaty, and the rise of 'ethical consumerism' suggest that the liberal conceptualisation of a 'publicity-reflectivity' mechanism, in the context of certain medium and long term political and technological developments, is operational and generating an ethical dynamic to world politics.
Moreover, when this actually existing dynamic is considered in the context of an information and communication order that operates far short of requirements of equity (in terms of distorted opportunities for access and participation, concentrations of ownership, and the reproduction of cultural hegemony), the potential capacity for ethical development latent in world politics could be further realised through channelling greater political energy to the global information and communication order.
EVERYDAY ETHICS IN INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS Nicholas Onuf.
Ethical conduct reflects what we feel we should or must do, given available standards. Norms and rules (norms are rules) set standards and prescribe conduct meeting those standards: ethics necessarily refers to rules in relation to the reasons that we give for our conduct. While philosophers looks for universal standards, everyday ethics refers to the mostly local and informal rules at hand. By setting standards for honourable, good and right conduct, these rules pull in different directions. First and foremost are rules that assign statuses, confer standing and call for honourable conduct. Everyday ethics characterize small worlds where face-to-face contact and performative speech dominate social relations. Despite appearances, the world of international relations is a small place.
The relatively few agents of states whose world it is share daily lives and personal histories. The status of the state as an exalted fiction accentuates the importance of honour for its agents. The modern world consists of many small worlds whose complex relations depend on the formalization of rules. State agents superintend this process, which eventuates in general, highly formal rules. Widely accepted, these general principles are nevertheless irreconcilable as universal standards. Instead they reflect the divergent tendencies inherent in everyday ethics.
THE EVENTS OF DISCOURSE AND THE ETHICS OF GLOBAL HOSPITALITY Michael J. Shapiro.
This article begins with a critical commentary on the philosophical legacy in which discourse is treated as a mode of representation and communication. It is noted that this approach to discourse fails to heed the relationship between the languages of philosophy and systems of ethical exclusion. Turning then to systems of thought that treat discourse as an event rather than a neutral tool for discovering a universally shared world, the article explores their implications for an ethics of global hospitality. Ultimately, the argument presented is that an ethic of hospitality requires hospitality to one's collective self, based on a recognition that every society, every so-called nation-state, contains disjoint presences, forms of life, biographical trajectories, kinds of persons, that the languages of national or civilisational solidarity will exclude. The response to such difference cannot easily take the form of rational-legal exception; it must be based on a project of re-enactment, a recovery of forms of difference that the consolidating conceptual performances of nationalists and civilisationists (among others) efface.