The moral power of soldiers to undertake the duty of obedience

Yitzhak Benbaji

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


This essay develops a contractarian response to Jeff McMahan's critique of the traditional war convention. Contractarianism asserts, first, that an outcome in which the current war convention is accepted is better for all relevant parties than any other feasible outcome; second, that the war convention is fair; third, that soldiers accept the existing convention; fourth, that soldiers' acceptance of the convention equalizes their moral status within wars vis-a'vis each other. The essay addresses McMahan's powerful objections to each of the above statements.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)43-73
Number of pages31
Issue number1
StatePublished - Oct 2011
Externally publishedYes


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