Philosophy of International Law


The book is a second edition. It aims to preserve the essential character of the first edition, but also to provide a more comprehensive and also more generally accessible introduction to the intrusion of philosophy into international law. The aim of the first edition was to show that mainstream international law is largely unworkable, and that this is significantly because it is permeated by misunderstood, undigested or outdated philosophical notions or is lacking in such notions where they are in fact needed. The book then offers a variety of philosophical ways out.

Key features of new edition

  • A revised historical introduction, illustrating the significance of late scholastic natural law for the shaping of the beginnings of international law
  • Explains the gradual dominance of legal positivism and pragmatism or professionalism for the contemporary international law scene.
  • Debates International law and its application in legal practice and legal personality, the scope of rightful self-defense and use of force.
  • The book offers various philosophical approaches to international legal order at the moment, such as the analytical school, law and economics, social democratic and Marxist notions of development
  • Resolves all in a newly-combined phenomenological, natural law approach, also in an Asian-Confucian context.

Additional information

Publisher: Place of publication:
  • Edinburgh
Publication year:
  • 2007


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