The Internationalization of Crimes

30 Pages Posted: 15 Sep 2008 Last revised: 4 Sep 2020

See all articles by Beth Van Schaack

Beth Van Schaack

Stanford Law School

Ronald C. Slye

Independent; Seattle University School of Law

Date Written: July 11, 2020


This work is a chapter for a forthcoming book on International Criminal Law: Intersections & Contradictions to be published by Foundation Press as part of its Concepts & Insights series. This chapter discusses one of the major conundrums of international criminal law (ICL): how to distinguish international crimes (war crimes, crimes against humanity, terrorism, and genocide) from their domestic analogs (murder, assault, and mayhem). The chapter discusses the various approaches to "internationalization" (focusing on issues of identity, transnationalism, human dignity, global stability, etc.) and concludes that international crimes lack a coherent unifying justification. Additional chapters in the text address the history of ICL, the sources of ICL, the major international crimes and defenses, and ICL reasoning and rhetoric. Publication is expected in early 2021.

Keywords: International Criminal Law

Suggested Citation

Van Schaack, Beth and Slye, Ronald C., The Internationalization of Crimes (July 11, 2020). Available at SSRN: or

Beth Van Schaack (Contact Author)

Stanford Law School ( email )

559 Nathan Abbott Way
Stanford, CA 94305
United States
650 303 6832 (Phone)

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Ronald C. Slye

Independent ( email )

Seattle University School of Law ( email )

901 12th Avenue, Sullivan Hall
P.O. Box 222000
Seattle, WA n/a 98122-1090
United States

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