Bringing reflective judgement into International Relations: Genocide in Rwanda

Head, N. (2010) Bringing reflective judgement into International Relations: Genocide in Rwanda. Journal of Global Ethics, 6(2), pp. 191-204. (doi:10.1080/17449626.2010.494365)

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Abstract

This article explores the role of reflective judgement in international relations through the lens of the Rwandan genocide in 1994. It argues that Hannah Arendt's writings on reflective judgement, and the dual perspectives of actor and spectator she articulates, offer us a set of conceptual tools with which to examine the failure of the international community to respond to the genocide as well as more broadly to understand the moral dilemmas posed by such crimes against humanity. Having identified elements which form part of Arendt's concept of judgement, parallels in the case of Rwanda are found, drawing on both empirical evidence and recent interpretations of the genocide. Reflective judgement is offered as both a means of critique and as a source of normative guidance for political actors.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Head, Dr Naomi
Authors: Head, N.
Subjects:J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Politics
Journal Name:Journal of Global Ethics
Publisher:Taylor and Francis
ISSN:1744-9626
ISSN (Online):1744-9634
Published Online:13 August 2010

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