War and Moral Stupidity
Review of International Studies
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This article uses the example of Wittgenstein’s decision to go to war in 1914 to frame a contrast between two different ways of thinking about moral stupidity and moral intelligence in relation to war, those of Jeff McMahan and Jane Addams. The article clarifies how pathways for thinking about the morality of war are blocked and enabled not only by different accounts of justice but also by different understandings of war. It is argued that if we want to be morally intelligent in our judgments about the ethics of war we should follow the pathway marked out by Addams and think less about justice and more about war.