Multilateralism and its Discontents
European Journal of International Law, Vol. 11, Issue 2, 2000
Posted: 4 Jul 2001
The contributions by Gerson and Anderson in the previous issue of EJIL suggest that multilateralism's critics are not merely hard-headed political realists but include both ends of the political spectrum and a wide number of scholars emerging within the international legal academy - including critical legal scholars, feminists, constructivists, liberal theorists, public choice theorists and those within law and economics. International lawyers, who have for too long defined themselves by our opposition to unilateralism, need to define the role and limits of multilateralism as well as of unilateralism. Both multilateral and unilateral processes for law-making and law enforcement may harm mankind and undermine the rule of law. Both Gerson and Anderson are, in radically different ways, warning us against multilateralism that fails to develop an organic relationship between the international and the domestic.
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