Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Between Anarchy and SocietyTrusteeship and the Obligations of Power$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

William Bain

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780199260263

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2004

DOI: 10.1093/0199260265.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use (for details see www.oxfordscholarship.com/page/privacy-policy).date: 20 May 2019

Trusteeship, International Society, and the Limit of Obligation

Trusteeship, International Society, and the Limit of Obligation

Chapter:
(p.173) 7 Trusteeship, International Society, and the Limit of Obligation
Source:
Between Anarchy and Society
Author(s):

William Bain

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/0199260265.003.0007

Offers some thoughts about the idea of trusteeship and its place in the history of international society. The first section, Unity, Progress, and Perfection of Humankind, puts forward the claim that trusteeship is a historic idea that is distinctive of a particular time and place, and, specifically, that it is intelligible in relation to other ideas that are especially characteristic of the Enlightenment. Thus, trusteeship discloses moral excellence, and indeed obtains powerful justification, when it contributes to the unity, progress, and perfection of the human family. The second section, A Society of States and a Family of Peoples, argues that these ideas call forth an understanding of international life that conceives international society and human society as forming a perfect identity, and which is underwritten by the duty that we should act so as to secure the good of our fellows. The third section, The Limit of Obligation, considers the limits of this duty, and concludes that in seeking the good of our fellows we must stop short of treating people paternally. This conclusion casts a pall of doubt on the legitimacy of trusteeship in contemporary international society, even when it is aimed at protecting fundamental human rights, because it proposes to treat an equal unequally—indeed, trusteeship is morally objectionable because it offends the irreducible sanctity of human personality by repudiating the essence of what it means to be human, a thinking and choosing agent.

Keywords:   barbarians, R.G. Collingwood, Christianity, civilization, contract, duty, Enlightenment, equality, Family of Peoples, history, human dignity, human family, inequality, international society, justification, legitimacy, legitimacy of trusteeship, limits to duty, limits to obligation, morality, non‐social community, obligation, paternalism, Perfection, Progress, race, religion, society, Society of States, trusteeship, tutelage, Unity, utilitarianism

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .