Some Reflections on the Theory of Sources of International Law: Reexamining Customary International Law

Israel Law Review 51(3), 2018, Forthcoming

21 Pages Posted: 8 Mar 2018 Last revised: 22 Sep 2018

Date Written: 2018

Abstract

This review explores certain challenges related to the notion of customary international law. It seems that it was a long time ago when international law academics and practitioners ever thought that the nature of this source was a well-settled topic. Nowadays international lawmaking processes involve an extraordinary number of interactions, taking place both formally and informally. Such complex features are reflected by an exponential increase in the scholarly study of international legal sources. The legal nature, its applicability and principles regulating customary international law are addressed in the book under review (Brian D Lepard (ed), Reexamining Customary International Law (Cambridge University Press 2017)) through several topical essays. The chapters offer a comprehensive analysis of these lawmaking processes and the challenges they portray from various perspectives and in various fields, such as: What is customary international law and why is it law? Is it law because it reflects a ‘global legislative’ model? What is the current value of the persistent objector theory? Is the two-element definition of customary international law still applicable? By meticulously addressing these and other inquiries, the book presents novel arguments and represents a stimulating addition to the literature on sources of international law.

Keywords: Customary International Law, Sources of International Law, International Law Theory

JEL Classification: K19, K00, K33

Suggested Citation

Heffes, Ezequiel, Some Reflections on the Theory of Sources of International Law: Reexamining Customary International Law (2018). Israel Law Review 51(3), 2018, Forthcoming, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3132537

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