The problem of harm in world politics: implications for the sociology of states-systems

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Abstract

Martin Wight's Systems of states is renowned for setting out a grand vision of the sociology of states-systems which has undoubted importance for contemporary efforts to build connections between historical sociology and international relations. Wight's interest in the fate of conceptions of the unity of humankind in different states can be developed in a study of the impact of cosmopolitan harm conventions in states-systems. What is most interesting from this point of view is how far different international systems regarded harm to individuals as a problem which all states, individually and collectively, should strive to solve. A central question for such an approach is whether the modern states-system has progressed in making unnecessary suffering a moral problem for the world as a whole.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)319-338
JournalInternational Affairs
Volume78
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 01 Apr 2002

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