The Reality of International Law: Essays in Honour of Ian Brownlie

The Reality of International Law: Essays in Honour of Ian Brownlie

The Reality of International Law: Essays in Honour of Ian Brownlie

The Reality of International Law: Essays in Honour of Ian Brownlie

Synopsis

Professor Ian Brownlie, CBE, OC, FBA, DCL retired from the Chichele Chair of Public International Law at the University of Oxford, a post that he has held since 1980. Before that he taught at Oxford, Nottingham, and the London School of Economics. He is widely recognized as one of the leading international lawyers of our time, and as well known and appreciated as much for his seminal publications and teaching over the years, as for his work as a practitioner. To express their gratitude for his supervision and support, a number of his present and former students from Oxford and London (many now prominent in academic life, foreign affairs, and practice), have written this collection of essays in honour of their former teacher. The collection is a very personal one reflecting the close and warm relationship between teacher and students and results in a wide-ranging overview of the subjects supervised by Professor Brownlie during more than forty years as an academic teacher. The collection takes its title, The Reality of International Law, from an appreciation of Professor Brownlie's personal contribution to the development of the subject. His commitment to international law as a system for the regulation of affairs between states has long been characterized by a strong sense of ideals, political and human, but also by an awareness, duly transmitted to his students, and of what law is in practice, of what is achievable, and of what remains to be done.

Excerpt

It is an honour and a pleasure to provide a Foreword for this tribute to Professor Brownlie, whom I have now known as a colleague and friend for nearly fifty years. I first met him when he came to Cambridge as a graduate student from his own university of Oxford. After graduation from Hertford College, he was minded to try a change of scene, and he became a graduate student of King's College, Cambridge with a Humanitarian Trust Studentship. During his stay in Cambridge he was working on his Oxford doctorate thesis, which became the important book, International Law and the Use of Force by States. Hersch Lauterpacht was the Whewell Professor and doubtless this was a principal reason why Brownlie was attracted to taste international law at Cambridge; but I suppose I must at that time have had something to do with the admission of graduate students in international law, for I remember writing to Professor Fifoot, who had been Brownlie's tutor in Oxford, to ask his opinion of him. His answer was simply that Brownlie was the ablest pupil he had ever had.

The presentation of books of essays on the occasion of some landmark on life's journey, such as retirement from a chair, has now become a common practice in this country, though it has been normal on the Continent for much longer. The present volume, however, is different in a way that makes it distinctly uncommon: each and every one of the twenty-five essays is contributed by a former Brownlie pupil. So it is a tribute made exclusively by former pupils grateful for a teacher who inspired their interest and expertise in international law. The broad range of topics dealt with in these essays illustrates what a wealth of different careers and experiences have made this book possible. It also demonstrates the international range of countries from which able graduates were attracted to Oxford in order to study with Brownlie.

Brownlie has taught with distinction on the staff of four universities: Leeds, Nottingham, the London School of Economics, and Oxford. His stay at Leeds (1956-7) was short. Then he migrated to Nottingham (1957-63) where he put international law firmly on the map, besides teaching some English law, and was influential in helping to develop what is now one of the best of our law schools. After Nottingham there followed a considerable period of college and university teaching back at Oxford, where he became a Fellow (1963-76) of a lively Wadham College then still under the celebrated presidency of the late Maurice Bowra, whom Brownlie much admired. That Oxford period came to an end when he was elected to the chair of international law at the London School of Economics (1976-80); the distinguished . . .

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