The Status of Pacifism

  • James Kellenberger
Part of the Palgrave Frontiers in Philosophy of Religion book series (PFPR)


The current status of pacifism is considered in this chapter. After the arguments against pacifism presented in Chap.  7 and their rejoinders have been briefly commented upon, several noteworthy twentieth-century pacifists are cited, including Mahatma Gandhi and Bertrand Russell. In the Second World War, it is observed, there were American conscientious objectors, and later many Americans protested the Vietnam War and other American war efforts. While many of these protestors objected only to specific wars, some were pacifists. The effort of one contemporary philosopher to reconcile just war theory and pacifism is examined, and it is observed that, though just war theory and pacifism finally are logically and morally incompatible, because no modern wars meet the just war criteria just war proponents and pacifists in recent decades have been able to protest against these war efforts together.

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© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • James Kellenberger
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyCalifornia State UniversityNorthridgeUSA

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