University of North Carolina at Asheville
Subject Listing - Political Science
Advisor: Dr. Brian E. Butler
Thursday, Oral Session 3, Presentation 5, Karpen Hall 016
JOHN RAWLS' FLAWED THEORY OF INTERNATIONAL JUSTICE IN LAW OF PEOPLES: WHY IT CANNOT WORK
This paper is a layout and critique John Rawls' theory of international justice as written in his book Law of Peoples. The purpose of the paper is to explain why Rawls does not successfully create a foundational theory of international law. The body of the text includes overviews of Rawls' theory and particular critiques that are major flaws within his work. The line of critique follows that of other philosophers such as Thomas Pogge, Charles Beitz, and Patrick Hayden. The paper is meant to explain John Rawls' theory for a Society of Peoples as fundamentally flawed, especially as a foundational theory for law, in regards to his liberal starting point, his co-opting of the word "peoples," and his use of the Principle of Affinity in place of Distributive justice. As Pogge and others suggest these flaws undermine the entirety of Rawls' project. Alternative views, such as the legal theory offered by Henry Shue might be more applicable to international law then Rawls' moral theory.
Advisor: Dr. Brian E. Butler, Ph.D., M.F.A., J.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Philosophy, University of North Carolina at Asheville, Asheville, NC