Following on from episode one’s discussion of the bombing of Hiroshima, Daniel Strand and Marc LiVecche discuss reactions and counterarguments to their defense of the bomb. They discuss the nature of evaluating moral dilemmas and determining proper responses, the reality of moral tragedy, the importance of context and consequence in moral decisions, the role of rules, and the (qualified) reality of moral absolutes. Questions arise about the difference between a focus on personal piety versus pursuing shalom, legalism versus relativism, and the prospect of revitalizing Protestant ethicist Paul Ramsey’s account of moral rules as a way to clarify the contours of faith and moral life.
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Marc LiVecche is the executive editor of Providence. For the 2020-2021 academic year, he will be a fellow at the Stockdale Center for Ethical Leadership at the US Naval Academy.From the summer of 2018 to fall of 2020, was the McDonald Research Scholar at the McDonald Centre for Theology, Ethics, & Public Life at Christ Church, Oxford University.
Prior to these roles, he completed doctoral studies at the University of Chicago, where he worked under the supervision of the political theorist and public intellectual Jean Bethke Elshtain, until her death in August, 2013. His first book, The Good Kill: Just War & Moral Injury, will be published in early 2021 by Oxford University Press. James Turner Johnson: Just War Historian, co-edited with Eric Patterson, examines the professional life of Jim Johnson and will be released this fall by Stone Tower Press. Currently, he is finalizing Moral Horror: A Just War Defense of Hiroshima. Before all this academic stuff, Marc spent twelve years doing a variety of things in Central Europe—ranging from helping build sport and recreational leagues in post-communist communities, to working at a Christian study and research center, to leading seminars on history and ethics onsite at the former Auschwitz-Birkenau Nazi concentration camp in Poland. This latter experience allowed him to continue his undergraduate study of the Shoah; a process which helped permanently inoculate him against pacifism.
Marc lives in Annapolis, Maryland with his wife and children–and a marmota monax whistlepigging under the shed.
Daniel Strand is a professor who teaches courses on the just war tradition, ethics and leadership, and contemporary political ethics. He was a postdoctoral fellow at Arizona State University (2015-19) in the History Department and the Program in Political History and Leadership. Strand’s research interests include the political and moral theology of Augustine of Hippo and the Augustinian tradition, ethics and foreign policy, the just war tradition, bioethics, and moral theory. He is the author of the forthcoming Gods of the Nations (Cambridge University Press), a historical study of Augustine’s political theology in The City of God. He has published articles and book chapters on Augustine of Hippo, Hannah Arendt, and the ethics of euthanasia. He is a contributing editor at Providence. He received his BA from the University of Minnesota, MDiv from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, and PhD in religion and ethics from the University of Chicago.
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