ESIL Interest Group History of International Law

ESIL Interest Group History of International Law

dinsdag 15 augustus 2017

BOOK: Jean-Marie MOEGLIN & Stéphane PÉQUIGNOT, Diplomatie et 'relations internationales' au Moyen Âge (IXe-XVe siècle) (Paris: PUF, 2017), 1112 p. ISBN 978-2-13-052787-9, € 42

(image source: PUF)

Jean-Marie Moeglin (Paris-Sorbonne) and Stéphane Péquignot (EPHE/Lisbon) published Diplomatie et 'relations internationales' au Moyen Âge in the series Nouvelle Clio (PUF).

Although the work might not seem focused on international law, several sections treat relevant subjects (treaties, arbitration, international legal order).

Abstract:
Les « relations internationales » à l’époque médiévale ont constitué un champ de recherches privilégié au XIXe siècle et jusqu’aux premières décennies du siècle suivant. Inspirés par la conception positiviste d’une histoire fondamentalement événementielle et institutionnelle, ces travaux ont connu, tout particulièrement en France, un discrédit de plus en plus profond au cours du XXe siècle. Ces dernières années cependant, à l’étranger comme en France, l’histoire des « relations internationales » et de la diplomatie a été l’objet de nouvelles études majeures, qui rompent radicalement avec les conceptions qui présidaient à la rédaction des ouvrages anciens. Elles adoptent une perspective d’anthropologie politique, écrivent à nouveaux frais l’histoire des relations entre rois, princes et puissants à la lumière des acquis de l’historiographie de la résolution des conflits, éclairent le fonctionnement concret du travail des ambassadeurs et montrent le caractère décisif qu’il a eu pour la pratique des « relations internationales ». Le nombre et l’importance de ces publi-cations nécessitaient qu’un ouvrage d’ensemble donne une synthèse des études déjà publiées, et ouvre de nouvelles pistes à l’intérieur de ce champ de recherches.
More information with the publisher.

ARTICLE: Anne HOLTHOEFER, Construction of International Crime: Lawyers, States, and the Origin of International Criminal Prosecution in the Interwar Period (Law & Social Inquiry XLII (2017), No. 3, 711-743)


Anne Holthoefer (Saint Anselm College) published an article on the "construction of international crime" and the interbellum.

Abstract:
This article explains the development of international crime as a legal category. I argue that states’ pursuit of political rights claims empowers international lawyers to develop new legal categories to grant states new tools to pursue their interests. At the same time, lawyers have a stake in defending the autonomy of law from politics, thus pushing for the development of legal norms and institutions that go beyond the original state intent. States’ turn to law thus begets more law, expanding the legal and institutional tools to solve international problems while simultaneously enforcing a commitment to principles of legality. To demonstrate the plausibility of the theory, the article studies the construction of the concept of an international crime in the interwar period (1919–1939). In response to the Allies’ attempt to prosecute the German Emperor, international lawyers sought the codification of international criminal law and drafted enforcement mechanisms. The interwar legal debate not only introduced international crime into the legal and political vocabulary, it also legitimized a new set of institutional responses to violations of international law, namely, international criminal prosecution.
Source: International Law Reporter.
More information with Wiley.

CONFERENCE: Humanitarianism and the Remaking of International Law: History, Ideology, Practice, Technology (Melbourne, 31 May-1 June 2018)


(image source: Blogger
Conference Humanitarianism and the Remaking of International Law: History, Ideology, Practice, Technology
Call for Papers: Deadline 1 September 2017
The language and logic of humanitarianism occupy an increasingly central place in international law. Humanitarian reason has shaped the ideology, practice, and technologies of international law over the past century, including through the redescription of the laws of war as international humanitarian law, the framing of mass displacement and armed conflict as ‘humanitarian’ crises, the use of humanitarian justifications for intervention, occupation, and detention, and the representation of international law as an expression of the conscience of humanity.
For some, this trend is clearly positive – international law is reimagined as humanity’s law, humanity as the alpha and omega of international law. Yet critics have pointed to the dark side of these developments and of the humanitarian logic operating within international law, arguing that consolidation of the laws of war has served the interests of powerful groups and states at key moments of potential challenge to existing systems of rule, humanitarianism has been taken up as a language to rationalise the violence of certain forms of occupation, intervention, and warfare, international humanitarian law has displaced other more constraining forms of law as the world becomes imagined as a global battlefield, humanitarian NGOs have served as a fifth column that has enabled particular forms of social transformation and constrained others, and a supposedly impartial humanitarianism has displaced politics.
This conference will bring together scholars working in law, history, international relations, and political theory to think critically about the ideology, institutions, practices, and technologies that condition modern humanitarianism and its relation to international law. Confirmed speakers include Amanda Alexander, Leila Brännström, Markus Gunneflo, Helen Kinsella, Martti Koskenniemi, Dino Kritsiotis, Frédéric Mégret, Naz Modirzadeh, Gregor Noll, Rose Parfitt, Hani Sayed, Ntina Tzouvala, Boyd van Dijk, and Fabia Veçoso. Selected papers will be published in an edited collection by a leading publisher.
Paper proposals related to the conference theme are now invited. Possible topics for papers include:
  • laws of war and the social question
  • international humanitarian law and revolution
  • decolonisation and the remaking of international humanitarian law
  • humanitarian intervention and occupation in international law and history
  • humanitarian and securitisation responses to dispossession, displacement, and refugees
  • international humanitarian law and the framing of civil war
  • international humanitarian law and national liberation movements
  • incidents and events in the history of international humanitarian law-making
  • humanitarian law and human rights law in the 'global' battle space
  • humanitarian organisations and the politics of intervention
  • the relation of humanitarianism and counter-terrorism in international law
  • knowledge production and international humanitarian law
  • humanitarian law and visual culture 
  • international humanitarian law and practices of distinction
  • the technologies of humanitarian law and war
  • humanitarian law and algorithmic warfare
  • humanitarianism and the penal turn in international law
  • the meanings of humanitarian law across time and space
  • the political economy of international humanitarianism
  • critical geographies of international humanitarian law
  • international law after humanity
Those proposing papers for presentation at the Conference should submit a one page abstract and brief bio by email to Professor Anne Orford at laureate-intlaw@unimelb.edu.au by 1 September 2017. 

(source: International Law Reporter)

dinsdag 11 juli 2017

JOURNAL: International Legal Histories in EJIL XXVIII/2 (May 2017)



The European Society of International Law's organ, EJIL, published a thematic section on international legal history in its last issue:
Giovanni Mantilla, "Conforming Instrumentalists: Why the USA and the United Kingdom Joined the 1949 Geneva Conventions" (483-512)
Narrelle Morris and Aden Knaap, "When Institutional Design Is Flawed: Problems of Cooperations at the United Nations War Crimes Commission, 1943-1948" (513-534)
Felix Lange, "Between Systematisation and Expertise for Foreign Policy: The Practice-Oriented Approach in Germany's International Legal Scholarship (1920-1980)" (535-557)
Prof. em. J. Weiler's introduction to this issue can be found here.
EJIL can be consulted with OUP online, or on iPad or iPhone (for ESIL members or subscribers).

woensdag 28 juni 2017

PAPER: Eyal BENVENISTI & Doreen LUSTIG, Taming Democracy: Codifying the Laws of War to Restore the European Order, 1856-1874

(image source: SSRN)

Eyal Benvenisti (Lauterpacht Centre, Cambridge) and Doreen Lustig (Tel Aviv University) published "Taming Democracy: Codifying the Laws of War to Restore the European Order, 1856-1874".

Abstract:
In this article, we contend that the canonical narrative about civil society’s efforts to discipline warfare during the mid-nineteenth century - a narrative of progressive evolution of Enlightenment-inspired international humanitarian law (IHL) - does not withstand scrutiny. On the basis of archival work and close reading of protocols, we argue that European governments codified the laws of war not for the purpose of protecting civilians from combatants’ fire, but rather to protect combatants from civilians eager to take up arms to defend their nation - even against their own governments’ wishes. We further argue that the concern with placing “a gun on the shoulder of every socialist” extended far beyond the battlefield. Monarchs and emperors turned to international law to put the dreaded nationalist and revolutionary genies back into the bottle. Specifically, we propose that it was the Franco-Prussian War of 1870 - 1871 and the subsequent short-lived, but violent, rise of the Paris Commune that prompted governments (more than any other war during this formative era of international law) to adopt the Brussels Declaration of 1874, the first comprehensive text on the laws of war. The new law not only exposed civilians to the war's harms, but also supported the growing capitalist economy by ensuring that market interests would be protected from the scourge of war and the consequences of defeat. The laws of war, in this formative stage, were more about restoring the political and economic order of Europe than about wartime. 
Full text on SSRN.

zaterdag 24 juni 2017

PAPER: Peter HILPOLD, How to Construe a Myth: Neutrality within the United Nations System Under Special Consideration of the Austrian Case

(image source: ESIL)

Prof. Peter Hilpold (Innsbruck) posted a paper on Austrian neutrality in the United Nations System, presented at this Interest Group's Workshop at the ESIL Research Forum (Granada, 30-31 March 2017).

Abstract:
In the 19th century neutrality was a highly appreciated concept. In the 20th century it has widely lost relevance and in principle it should be incompatible with UN membership. However, also under the UN system some states have opted for neutrality and it can be argued that there is still space for this status within the universal peace order. In fact, this peace order is far from perfect. There are several lacunae in the prohibition of the use of force and this concept is open to different interpretations. New challenges, such as international terrorism, are emerging that could threaten the absolute prohibition of the use of force. It is contended here that neutrals could play an important role when it comes to find an interpretation of this prohibition that best could reconcile the goals of peace and security with the overall - still imperfect - structure of the UN system. These questions are analysed with primary reference to Austrian neutrality which on the hand seems obsolete but on the other is forcefully looking for a new meaning.  
More information here.

woensdag 7 juni 2017

BOOK: Andreas VON ARNAULD (ed.), Völkerrechtsgeschichte(n): Historische Narrative und Konzepte im Wandel (Berlin: Duncker & Humblot, 2017), ISBN 978-3-428-15163-9, € 74,9


(Image source: D&H)

Andreas von Arnauld (Kiel) published Völkerrechtsgeschichte(n): Historische Narrative und Konzepte im Wandel.

Abstract:

Völkerrechtsgeschichte(n). Der Begriff deutet an, dass die Geschichte des Völkerrechts nicht einfach-linear ist, sondern vielgestaltig und abhängig von der Perspektive dessen, der sie erzählt. Sich mit Geschichte zu befassen, heißt zu fragen, wer an was aus welchem Grund erinnert. Der Begriff deutet zugleich an, dass die Historiographie eng mit jenen Narrativen verbunden ist, die Völker und Staatengruppen zu Kollektiven formen. Welche historischen Gegenbilder schaffen wir mit der Rede vom »Westfälischen System«, wie konstruieren wir Epochen und Zäsuren, wie konzeptualisieren wir historischen Wandel – und aus welcher Perspektive? Diesen Fragen geht der vorliegende Band nach. Zugleich werden fundamentale Konzepte des Völkerrechts (internationale Gemeinschaft, Krieg und Frieden, Räume) in ihrem Wandel historisch rekonstruiert. Auf diese Weise soll die Funktion deutlich werden, die solche Rekonstruktionen für unsere Deutung des Völkerrechts der Gegenwart
Table of contents: 
  • Andreas von Arnauld, Völkerrechtsgeschichte(n). Einleitende Überlegungen 
  • Rainer Grote, Das »Westfälische System« des Völkerrechts: Faktum oder Mythos? 
  • Jochen von Bernstorff, International Legal History and its Methodologies: How (Not) to Tell the Story of the Many Lives and Deaths of the ius ad bellum 
  • Heinhard Steiger, Das Ius Publicum Europaeum und das Andere: a global history approach 
  • Markus Kotzur, Konstitutionelle Momente? Gedanken über den Wandel im Völkerrecht 
  • Erika de Wet & Ioannis Georgiadis, From communitas orbis to a Community of States – and Back? 
  • Carsten Stahn, Das Ringen um den Frieden: Jus ad bellum – Jus contra bellum – Jus Post Bellum? 
  • Alexander Proelß & Camilla Haake, Gemeinschaftsräume in der Entwicklung: von der res communis omnium zum common heritage of mankind
More information on the publisher's website.

(source: International Law Reporter)