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Can International Law Be a Law of Resistance? Ten Steps for a Renewal of International Normative Ambition (Le droit International peut-il etre un droit de resistance? Dix conditions pour un renouveau de l'ambition normative internationale)

40 Pages Posted: 9 Aug 2008 Last revised: 13 Aug 2008

Frederic Megret

McGill University - Faculty of Law

Date Written: August 8, 2007

Abstract

International law has traditionally been above all a law aimed at reinforcing sovereignty and, secondarily, of taming it via the emergence of an international community. What is typically excluded from this encounter is a whole series of efforts undertaken by civil society, individuals, or social movements, even when those objectively reinforce international law's goals. International law as a normative project could gain significantly from a greater recognition of the striking role played by non-state actors in its implementation. A case can be made that if international law increasingly casts itself substantively as a law of human beings, then its modes of implementation should follow suit. The idea of resistance as a rehabilitation of the role human agency can provide the missing link. The article suggests ten preliminary conditions before such a utopia could take root.

Notes: Downloadable document is in French.

Keywords: International law, resistance, sovereignty, cosmopolitanism, civil disobedience, rebellion, legal pluralism, natural law, enforcement, human rights

JEL Classification: K10, K30, K33

Suggested Citation

Megret, Frederic, Can International Law Be a Law of Resistance? Ten Steps for a Renewal of International Normative Ambition (Le droit International peut-il etre un droit de resistance? Dix conditions pour un renouveau de l'ambition normative internationale) (August 8, 2007). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1212542 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1212542

Frédéric Mégret (Contact Author)

McGill University - Faculty of Law ( email )

3644 Peel Street
Montreal H3A 1W9, Quebec
Canada

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