The New Apologists: The International Court of Justice and Human Rights

Retfærd, vol. 48, No. 1, pp. 49-78

16 Pages Posted: 7 Feb 2015 Last revised: 27 Mar 2015

See all articles by Malcolm Langford

Malcolm Langford

University of Oslo, Faculty of Law, Department of Public and International Law

Date Written: February 5, 2015

Abstract

The International Court of Justice (ICJ) is typically known for its conservatism and formalism rather than its advancement of human rights. At the turn of the Century, realist scholars predicted the Court’s eventual decline while rational choice institutionalists projected only a role within more technical and reciprocal fields of international law. However, the Court’s recent jurisprudence in human rights has been heralded by a significant and diverse group of scholars. This new apology for the ICJ is critically examined in this paper. With the use of quantitative and qualitative methods, it examines the Court’s independence, its doctrinal responsiveness, and broader effectiveness. While the new apologists are right to point to a human rights turn, the paper strikes a much more cautious stance on both its nature and scope.

Keywords: International Court of Justice, Human Rights, International Law, Realism, Institutionalism, Judicial Independence, Adjudicative Responsiveness, Effectiveness

Suggested Citation

Langford, Malcolm, The New Apologists: The International Court of Justice and Human Rights (February 5, 2015). Retfærd, vol. 48, No. 1, pp. 49-78. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2560871

Malcolm Langford (Contact Author)

University of Oslo, Faculty of Law, Department of Public and International Law ( email )

P.O. Box 6706 St. Olavs plass
N-0130 Oslo
Norway

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