Law, Lawyers, and Empire: From the Foreign Policy Establishment to Technical Legal Hegemony
Cambridge History of American Law, Forthcoming
59 Pages Posted: 30 Nov 2006
Drawing on the sociological tools of Pierre Bourdieu, this chapter traces the role of law in U.S. foreign policy over the course of the twentieth century, showing the rise of the so-called Foreign Policy Establishment led by corporate lawyers representing themselves and their clients - while also working to construct and embody the state. It shows the challenges to that elite group and the response in the 1970s and 1980s. The result, somewhat paradoxically, is that the specific influence of the elite has declined but the legal approaches that they offered have come to be more entrenched and autonomous. The changes help to account for the "globalization of law" that the chapter traces in human rights, international commercial arbitration, and trade.
Keywords: foreign policy, lawyers
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