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Argument and Change in World Politics
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 (ISBN-13: 9780511032561 | ISBN-10: 0511032560)

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Arguments have consequences in world politics that are as real as the military forces of states or the balance of power among them. Neta Crawford reveals how ethical arguments, not power politics or economics, explain decolonization, the greatest change in world politics to occur over the last five hundred years. The book also analyzes how argument might be used to to remake contemporary world politics, suggesting how such arguments apply to the issue of humanitarian intervention.

Contents

1. Argument, belief and culture; 2. Ethical argument and argument analysis; 3. Colonial arguments; 4. Decolonizing bodies: ending slavery and denormalizing forced labour; 5. Faces of humanitarianism, rivers of blood; 6. Sacred trust; 7. Self-determination; 8. Alternative explanations, counterfactuals and causation; 9. Poesis and praxis: toward ethical world politics.

Reviews

"...a bold and stimulating account of the role of ethical argument in the abolition of slavery, the extension of European colonialism, the formation of international trusteeships, and decolonization." Political Science Quarterly

"In Argument and Change in World Politics, Crawford performs a signal service to scholarship on ethics and international affairs. Echoing the constructivist school, and the English school, and the broadly liberal tradition, she argues that ethics matters. Her theory of how it matters and her use of this theory to explain what is arguably the most important shift in the international system of the last several centuries--the deligitimization of colonialism and the accession to statehood of colonies all across Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia--amount to one of the richest and most developed arguments for the importance of ideas in the last decade... [Her book] will also strengthen all who have sought to make their arguments heard even when opposed by a formidable lack of consensus." Ethics and International Affairs

"In Argument and Change in World Politics, Crawford performs a signal service to scholarship on ethics and international affairs. Echoing the constructivist school, and the English school, and the broadly liberal tradition, she argues that ethics matters. Her theory of how it matters and her use of this theory to explain what is arguably the most important shift in the international system of the last several centuries--the deligitimization of colonialism and the accession to statehood of colonies all across Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia--amount to one of the richest and most developed arguments for the importance of ideas in the last decade. . . [Her book] will also strengthen all who have sought to make their arguments heard even when opposed by a formidable lack of consensus." Ethics and International Affairs

"...Crawford's achievement here is substantial. . . a major contribution to the growing study of applied ethics in world affairs." The International History Review

"Worth reading.... Highly recommended." Choice

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