Chapter

Political Evil, Cosmopolitan Realism, and the Normative Ambivalence of the International Criminal Court

Patrick Hayden

in Governance, Order, and the International Criminal Court

Published in print May 2009 | ISBN: 9780199546732
Published online September 2009 | e-ISBN: 9780191720406 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199546732.003.0007
Political Evil, Cosmopolitan Realism, and the Normative Ambivalence of the International Criminal Court

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This chapter adopts a different approach to those that now regard the creation of the ICC as evidence of the progressive ‘enlightenment’ of humankind. It argues that the ICC is best characterized in terms of cosmopolitan realism, that is, a critical cosmopolitanism shorn of historical and moral idealism, and motivated more by the terrifying experience of political evil than by the triumph of enlightened moral consciousness. In this sense, the cosmopolitan law underwriting the ICC can only be properly understood with constant reference to the phenomenon of political evil. The aim of this chapter is to understand how the political of the ICC's actions can be understood in terms of the ambivalence between confronting political evil and promoting its universal morality via its capacity to subject the perpetrators of evil to political judgement and legal accountability. Given these aims, the chapter attempts to understand and explain why the ICC's actions should be regarded as the latest effort to juridify evil.

Keywords: cosmopolitanism; realism; Arendt; political evil; juridification; political risk

Chapter.  8910 words. 

Subjects: US Politics

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