Skip to content

Research at St Andrews

The ethics of war up to Thomas Aquinas

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)

DOI

Open Access permissions

Open

Author(s)

School/Research organisations

Abstract

This chapter explores major developments in concepts of justified warfare and norms of military conduct over nearly 2,000 years. From at least the first millennium BC, ideas about the justice of war and customary norms regulating combat were developed by Western societies. Throughout the ancient and medieval worlds, war was subjected to varying degrees of ethical analysis, as well as being influenced by social pragmatism. Examining a variety of evidence, this chapter argues that the two branches of just war doctrine, jus ad bellum and jus in bello, developed hand-in-hand and should be seen as an integrated whole. This intermingling of jus ad bellum and jus in bello concerns produced a sophisticated and complex body of ethical thought about war—embodied in the systematic analysis of medieval canon lawyers and theologians—and ultimately provided the essential building blocks for modern just war doctrine.
Close

Details

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationOxford Handbook of Ethics of War
EditorsHelen Frowe, Seth Lazar
Place of PublicationNew York
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Print)9780199943418
DOIs
StateE-pub ahead of print - Oct 2015

Publication series

NameOxford Handbooks
PublisherOxford University Press

    Research areas

  • Ethics, War, Aristotle, Cicero, Augustine, Canon law, Medieval theology

Discover related content
Find related publications, people, projects and more using interactive charts.

View graph of relations

Related by author

  1. Expanding the history of the just war: the ethics of war in ancient Egypt

    Cox, R. 8 Jun 2017 In : International Studies Quarterly. In press, sqx009

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  2. Gratian

    Cox, R. W. S. C. 2016 Just War Thinkers. O'Driscoll, C. & Brunstetter, D. (eds.). Routledge, (War, Conflict and Ethics Series)

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

  3. Religion and the Hundred Years War

    Cox, R. W. S. C. 2016 The Hundred Years War. Problems in Focus Revisited OR The Hundred Years War Revisited. Problems in Focus. Curry, A. (ed.). Palgrave Macmillan

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

  4. John Wyclif on War and Peace

    Cox, R. Oct 2014 Woodbridge: Boydell Press. (Royal Historical Society Studies in History New Series; vol. 90)

    Research output: Book/ReportBook

ID: 21515169