Describes the aims, approaches, and structure of the book. The basic issue addressed is the political principles that should govern global politics, and to analyse this the book posits six sets of questions, each of which is addressed in separate chapters that separately examine (moral) universalism, civil and political justice, distributive justice, political structures, just war, and humanitarian intervention. The author makes four points: that his concern is with political philosophy; that he refers to global rather than international political theory; that he examines global political theory rather than global ethics; and that he distinguishes three levels at which global political theory may operate—its relation to domestic political theory, the principles and institutions involved, and the application of these principles to specific issues. He also identifies the aims of the book, which are: to provide a defence of what is commonly termed a cosmopolitan political morality; to explore in depth and evaluate competing philosophical perspectives on these issues; and to emphasize that the topics examined in the book are very closely intertwined and cannot be engaged satisfactorily in isolation from one another. The four competing approaches that may be taken to global political theory (cosmopolitanism, realism, the ‘society of states’, and nationalism) are outlined in turn in order to provide a framework within which the six questions posited in the book are examined, and to stake out and defend the cosmopolitan approach taken.
Keywords: civil justice, cosmopolitan political morality, cosmopolitanism, distributive justice, domestic political theory, global political theory, global politics, humanitarian intervention, just war, moral universalism, nationalism, political institutions, political justice, political morality, political philosophy, political structures, political theory, realism, society of states, universalism
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