Peace Studies..........................Philosophy 213
Through the release of atomic energy, our generation has brought into the world the most revolutionary force since prehistoric man's discovery of fire. This basic force of the universe cannot be fitted into the outmoded concept of narrow nationalisms. For there is no secret and there is no defense; there is no possibility of control except through the aroused understanding and insistence of the peoples of the world. We scientists recognize our inescapable responsibility to carry to our fellow citizens an understanding of atomic energy and its implications for society. In this lies our only security and our rnly hope--we believe that an informed citizenry will act for life and not for death. A. Einstein, Jan.22, 1947
Nuclear War: Issues, Ideas and Morality
I. Weapons, Weapons Systems, Science and Technology
- What is science? Some models of science.
- Relation between science and technology.
- Questions concerning what sorts of questions science can and cannot answer. Questions concerning what science/technology can and cannot do.
- Nuclear Weapons
- Bombs, warheads and how they work
- Delivery Systems and how they work
- Biological Weapons and how they work
- Chemical Weapons and how they work
II. Nuclear, Biological and Chemical Warfare/NBC War
III. Human Factors
- Explosion and explosion environment--immediate
- Ecological impact
- long range fall out,air currents, ocean conditions
- biological/ecological scene
- nuclear winter; ozone destruction
- chemical weapons factors
- biological weapons factors
- Existential/social/psychological impact
- Immediate--same as above, except existentialized
- Long range impact
- existential, pyschological, genetic
- social,political, economic
- moral issues for survivors
- Psychological/moral impact of life under the constant threat of nuclear annihilation/NBC warfare
IV Strategies For Preventing NBC War and/or "Conventional" War
- Human nature
- National Self-Consciousness
- Counter Force
- Pentagon Plan
- Leave it to the techs: Star Wars
- Arms Control
- World Government
- Non-Violent Resistance
Class Sessions: largely discussions based on the assigned readings.
Text: The Arms Race and Nuclear War, David Barash
Other texts: if they become available in time--publicaton dates uncertain
Supplementary texts will be provided
Written Work: three take-home exams. All essays.
Grades: Exams, class participation and attendance will all facor in.
This class is about thinking about your life, our world and whether there will even be a life and a world! Therefore: Keep up with the readings; keep up with the discussions; participate in the discussions of the issues.
Turn it into an adventure of the mind--and have a good adventure, all term long.