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Vol 25 No 2 Feb/March 2020

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Cover of Lewin on Trusts

Lewin on Trusts

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The 'New' International Law

ISBN13: 9781138656475
To be Published: January 2021
Publisher: Routledge
Country of Publication: UK
Format: Hardback
Price: £105.00

This book analyses the tendency in international law scholarship and criticism to seek a ‘new’ international law. Drawing and building on scholarship around the political significance of theological ideas, it argues that underlying this tendency is a relationship between international law and messianic thinking. Demonstrating that messianism has been, and continues to be, a telling quality of much international legal thought, the book also traces its broader implications; particularly with regard to the use of violence and the perpetuation of global inequalities. The temptation to project onto international law the hoped-for realisation of a new world obscures both the failures of international law and a proper appreciation what it can achieve. As such, international law, it is argued, must be radically reconceived if it is to avoid the traps of determinism and the false universalism inherent within the dominant form of messianism in international law.

Public International Law

Part 1: Apocalyptic Messianism
Chapter 1: Columbus: the New World and the Apocalypse
Chapter 2: Hobbes, Milton and the eschatology of sovereignty
Chapter 3: A new politics of the apocalypse?

Part 2: Utopic Messianism
Chapter 4: Kant and the universal history of international law
Chapter 5: Calling for the ‘new’: International law’s discipline of progression
Chapter 6: The limits of progressive universalism

Part 3: Benjamin and the weak messianic power of international law
Chapter 7: The power of the ‘weak’ messiah
Chapter 8: Fighting the phantasm of the Universal