Self-defence and Forcing the Choice between Lives

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2 Citations (Scopus)


In the standard case of justifiable killing in self-defence one agent without provocation tries to kill a second agent and the second agent’s only way to avoid death is to kill his attacker. It is widely accepted that such killings in self-defence are morally justifiable, but it has proved difficult to show why this is so. Recently, Montague has put forward an account in terms of forcing a choice between lives, and Teichman has propounded a quasi-Hobbesian rights-based account of self-defence. I argue that neither Montague nor Teichman has succeeded in providing an adequate justifcation for killing in self-defence.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)239-243
JournalJournal of Applied Philosophy
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1992


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