This Handbook represents a big step towards a global history of international law. First, it notes that the Eurocentric story of international law is incomplete since it ignores the violence, ruthlessness, and arrogance which accompanied the dissemination of Western rules, and the destruction of other legal cultures which that dissemination caused. Second, the authors of the book come from different academic backgrounds: they are lawyers, historians, and political scientists. They come from, and work in, different regions of the world. Although accounts of the history of international law written from a non-European perspective are still rare, processes of creative appropriation and hybridization have recently been highlighted both by global historians and by international and comparative lawyers. Studying the history of international law can help improve our understanding of the character of a particular legal order, its promise, and its limits. The world is experiencing a period of fundamental change in international relations, a process instigated by the collapse of the Soviet Union and the communist bloc of states, and the end of the Cold War. This Handbook represents not the history, but many histories of international law.
Oxford Handbook of the History of International Law
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