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The politics of international law: 20 years later

Koskenniemi, Martti (2009) The politics of international law: 20 years later. European Journal of International Law, 20 (1). pp. 7-19. ISSN 0938-5428

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Identification Number: 10.1093/ejil/chp006


The essay examines some of the changes in my own thinking about the politics of engaging in international law since the original publication of the article that opened the first issue of EJIL in 1990. The essay points to the change of focus from indeterminacy (to which I am as committed as ever) of legal arguments to the structural biases of international institutions. It then discusses the politics of definition, that is to say, the strategic practice of defining international situations and problems in new expert languages so as to gain control over them. It attacks the increasing ‘managerialism’ in the field and ends with a few reflections about the significance of the moment of the establishment of the Journal 20 years ago.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 1998 - 2019 European Journal of International Law
Divisions: Law
Subjects: J Political Science > JX International law
J Political Science > JZ International relations
K Law > K Law (General)
Date Deposited: 08 Oct 2019 16:09
Last Modified: 18 Feb 2024 00:51

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