Library Header Image
LSE Research Online LSE Library Services

Armitage on Locke on international theory: the two treatises of government and the right of intervention

Kelly, Paul (2014) Armitage on Locke on international theory: the two treatises of government and the right of intervention. History of European Ideas, 41 (1). pp. 49-61. ISSN 0191-6599

PDF - Accepted Version
Download (433kB) | Preview

Identification Number: 10.1080/01916599.2014.948290


The paper examines David Armitage's claim that Locke makes an important contribution to international theory by exploring the place of international relations within the Two Treatises of Government. Armitage's suggestion is that the place of international theory in Locke's canonical works is under-explored. In particular, the paper examines the implication of Locke's account of the executive power of the law of nature which allows third parties to punish breaches of the law of nature wherever they occur. The corollary is a general right of intervention under the law of nature. Such a right could create a chaotic individualistic cosmopolitanism and has led scholars such as John Rawls to claim that Locke has no international theory. In response to this problem the paper explores the way in which Locke's discussion of conquest, revolution and the right of peoples to determine the conditions of good government in chapters xvi to xix of the second Treatise contributes to a view of international relations that embodies a law of peoples.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2014 The Author
Divisions: Government
Subjects: J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
J Political Science > JZ International relations
Sets: Research centres and groups > Director's Management Team
Departments > Government
Date Deposited: 25 Sep 2014 12:20
Last Modified: 20 Mar 2019 02:29

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics