Toward a New Dialogue between Conflict of Laws and International Law
American Journal of International Law (AJIL) Unbound, Vol. 110, 2016
6 Pages Posted: 22 Mar 2018
Date Written: March 21, 2018
In the United States, there is a tendency for international law scholars to view conflict of laws as outside their discipline, and for conflict-of-laws scholars to view their discipline as separate from international law. This was not always the case: Joseph Story, in his classic 1834 commentaries on conflict of laws, conceived of the field as “private international law.” This essay calls for a new dialogue between conflict of laws and international law. It argues that conflict of laws and international law share a general goal of contributing to global order in a world of territorially defined states with diverse laws; it identifies areas of doctrinal overlap between the fields, using illustrations from the Restatement of Foreign Relations Law and the Restatement of Conflict of Laws; it shows both how conflict of laws might help international law address challenges such as fragmentation, and how international law provides foundations for conflict of laws; and it identifies new trends in interdisciplinary international law/international relations scholarship that extend beyond public international law to include conflict of laws.
Keywords: Choice of Law, Conflict of Laws, Private International Law, International Law, Foreign Relations Law, Global Governance, International Relations, Transnational Litigation, International Litigation
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