National Self-Determination


in Ethics in the Public Domain

Published in print August 1995 | ISBN: 9780198260691
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191682148 | DOI:
National Self-Determination

Show Summary Details


This chapter deals with the moral justification of the case for national self-determination. It subject lies within the morality of international relations rather than within international law and international relations proper. It assumes throughout that states and international law should recognize such a right only if there is a sound moral case for it. The second section deals with the nature of groups that might be the subject of such a right. The third section considers the value served by the enjoyment of political independence by such groups. The fourth section considers the case for conceding that there is a moral right to self-determination. On the one hand, the right to self-determination is neither absolute nor unconditional. On the other hand, the interests of members of an encompassing group in the self-respect and prosperity of the group are among the most vital human interests.

Keywords: groups; self-government; self-determination; human interest; political independence

Chapter.  10542 words. 

Subjects: Jurisprudence and Philosophy of Law

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.