Two Paths towards Peace (with James Child)

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What makes violence bad? Is peace merely the absence of war? Is non-violence anything more than not acting violently? When, if ever, is violence justified? Can violence stop violence? These are among the difficult issues that are grappled with in the uniquely structured "Two Paths Toward Peace". In this book, an advocate of minimum justified violence, Child, and a pacifist, Scherer, engage in a dialogue about the uses and abuses of violence in the contemporary world. Scherer begins the exchange with a thoughtful and coherent explanation of traditional pacifism and an introduction to a new conception of pacifism teleological pacifism, which was espoused by Gandhi. Child responds by assessing the cost of uncritical pacifism, particularly in the 20th century. The authors then embark on a detailed three-part inquiry: dissecting first the concept of justified violence; then the concept of pacifism; and finally, exploring the interplay between these two concepts.

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