This course will examine the possibility, desirability, and feasibility of abolishing the institution of war, examining arguments for the desirability and necessity of war, considering possible costs and benefits of war, and weighing alternative strategies for advancing the cause of reduction and abolition. Under review will be historic, recent, and current examples of war and war propaganda from various parts of the world. David Swanson will provide text and video each week, engage in discussion with students, answer any questions, and provide feedback on writing by students each week. Students are encouraged to bring any and all examples and arguments to the discussion. Here is an outline of the arguments that Swanson will be advancing each week:
Week One: War is not universal, inevitable, necessary, or
beneficial. It can be ended.
Week Two: War is immoral.
Week Three: War endangers.
Week Four: War destroys nature.
Week Five: War destroys freedom.
Week Six: War impoverishes and wastes.
Week Seven: There are alternatives to war.
Week Eight: War will not go away unless we make it.
Students are encouraged to review the website of an organization that Swanson directs: World Beyond War and to read either or both of these books: War Is A Lie, and War No More: The Case for Abolition. (Note that sales of War Is A Lie will cease for the winter of 2015-2016, prior to a Spring publication of an updated Second Edition by Just World Books.)
- Teacher: David Swanson