A Transcivilizational Perspective on International Law: Questioning Prevalent Cognitive Frameworks in the Emerging Multi-Polar and Multi-Civilizational World of the Twenty-First Century

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Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, Jul 15, 2010 - Law - 492 pages
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The twenty-first century will witness conflicts which may destabilize the international order. These conflicts are likely to arise between emerging Asian States such as China and India whose material power is growing, and the Western nations who wield significant ideational power. A West-centric international society will change to a multi-polar and multi-civilizational global society. This structural change includes, and further needs, changes of understandings and perceptions of the world, including of international law. The perspectives from which we see, understand, appreciate and assess international law must change. We need to interpret international law not only from a prevalent Statecentric international perspective and West-centric transnational perspective. Onuma argues that we must grasp international law from what he calls a trans-civilizational perspective as well. By adopting such three-layered perspectives, international law is shown to be functioning as a tool of politics yet constrained by cultural and civilizational factors. Such complex subjects as global history of international law, concepts of general and customary international law, and human rights could be appreciated in a more nuanced and subtle manner.
 

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Contents

PREFACE
23
INTRODUCTION
29
A COGNITIVE FRAMEWORK TO UNDERSTAND THE TWENTYFIRSTCENTURY WORLD
39
CHAPTER II POWER AND LEGITIMACY IN INTERNATIONAL LAW
109
CHAPTER III TOWARDS A PROPER UNDERSTANDING OF GENERAL INTERNATIONAL LAW CUSTOMARY INTERNATIONAL LAW AN...
203
CHAPTER IV HISTORY OF INTERNATIONAL LAW AS SEEN FROM A TRANSCIVILIZATIONAL PERSPECTIVE
266
CHAPTER V HUMAN RIGHTS IN A MULTIPOLAR AND MULTICIVILIZATIONAL WORLD
370
BIBLIOGRAPHY
463
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
476
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About the author (2010)

Onuma (family name) Yasuaki (given name), LLB (Tokyo), LLD (Tokyo), is Distinguished Professor at Meiji University and Professor Emeritus at the University of Tokyo. He has also taught at Columbia, Michigan, Paris, Peking, Yale, etc. His publications include A Normative Approach to War: Peace, War, and Justice in Hugo Grotius (Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1993) ; "International Law in and with International Politics", EJIL, Vol. 14, No. 1 (2003).

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