The Paintings of International Law
Forthcoming in Hohmann & Joyce (eds), International Law’s Objects: Emergence, Encounter and Erasure through Object and Image (OUP, 2017)
17 Pages Posted: 23 Nov 2016
Date Written: September 27, 2016
Using data drawn from the catalogues of the main publishers of international law books, this short essay focuses on the imagery used in the design of international law books and the way it contributes to the aesthetics of international legal argumentation. This essay zeroes in on the paintings that are reproduced on the cover of international law books with a view to unravelling some of the dynamics of the aesthetics of international legal argumentation. It argues that the greatest driver in the choice for the imagery of a book cover is the game which the author wants to play with the reader. It is argued that authors commonly use the cover page of their international law books, not only to illustrate their work but, more fundamentally, to attract readers into a game where the readers themselves create an explanatory narrative around the book.
Keywords: International law, international legal theory, aesthetics of legal arguments; international legal arguments; sources of international law, imagery of law, international legal scholarship, production of knowledge; legal knowledge
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