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date: 24 November 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter explores the nexus of moral reasoning, politics, and time, especially in the realm of international politics. It argues that a crucial venue through which adversarial politics infiltrates moral reasoning is the latter’s need of temporalization. Temporalization is facilitated by temporal contexts and narratives so that the temporal boundaries of the situations-to-be-judged become essentially contested. The essential contestedness of temporal boundaries can subjugate normative language and moral reasoning to the dictates of adversarial politics and relativism. Temporalization can change morality into an instrument of power politics. To overcome these problems and salvage morality from subjugation and relativism, the chapter suggests that we should focus on international institutions, which can salvage moral reasoning by changing the structure of incentives facing adversaries, encouraging them not to aim predominantly at their own, domestic audience, but equally at international and universal audiences.

Keywords: moral reasoning, time, temporalization, temporal context, narrative, organization, just war theory

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