IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

Globalization, Violence, and Ethics

Listed author(s):
  • Edward Demenchonok
  • Richard Peterson
Registered author(s):

    Despite its many benefits, globalization has proven to harbor a good deal of violence. This is not only a matter of the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction inaugurated by the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, but includes many forms of indirect or "structural violence" resulting from the routine of economic and political institutions on the global scale. In this essay, the multifaceted phenomena of violence are approached from the standpoint of ethics. The prevailing political thinking associated with "realism" fails to address the problems of militarism and of hegemonic unilateralism. In contrast, many philosophers are critically rethinking the problem of global violence from different ethical perspectives. Despite sharing similar concerns, philosophers nevertheless differ over the role of philosophical reflection and the potentials of reason. These differences appear in two contrasting approaches associated with postmodern philosophy and discourse ethics. In the analysis of discourse ethics, attention is paid to Karl-Otto Apel's attempt of philosophically grounding a macroethics of planetary co-responsibility. At the heart of the essay is the analysis of the problem of violence, including terrorism, by Jürgen Habermas, who explains the phenomenon of violence in terms of the theory of communicative action as the breakdown of communication. Jacques Derrida's deconstruction of the notion of "terrorism" also is analyzed. According to the principle of discourse ethics, all conflicts between human beings ought to be settled in a way free of violence, through discourses and negotiations. These philosophers conclude that the reliance on force does not solve social and global problems, including those that are the source of violence. The only viable alternative is the "dialogical" multilateral relations of peaceful coexistence and cooperation among the nations for solving social and global problems. They emphasize the necessity of strengthening the international rule of law and institutions, such as a reformed United Nations. Copyright © 2009 American Journal of Economics and Sociology, Inc..

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:
    File Function: link to full text
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

    Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal American Journal of Economics and Sociology.

    Volume (Year): 68 (2009)
    Issue (Month): 1 (01)
    Pages: 51-76

    in new window

    Handle: RePEc:bla:ajecsc:v:68:y:2009:i:1:p:51-76
    Contact details of provider: Web page:

    Order Information: Web:

    No references listed on IDEAS
    You can help add them by filling out this form.

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bla:ajecsc:v:68:y:2009:i:1:p:51-76. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Wiley-Blackwell Digital Licensing)

    or (Christopher F. Baum)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.