Practical Philosophy Seminar: Chris Armstrong (University of Southampton)
"Dealing with dictators"
Abstract: "Dictatorship is a moral outrage. How should outsiders - including those committed to liberal democratic principles - respond to it? A number of philosophers have argued that we have a duty to cease trading with dictatorships. I will distinguish instrumental and non-instrumental arguments for breaking off trade with dictatorships. But in each case I will show that the case for breaking off trade is harder to make than we might suppose. In fact, I will suggest, our best moral response to the horror of dictatorship might turn out to be to trade more, rather than less, with countries blighted by it."