The Oxford Handbook on the Sources of International Law

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The Oxford Handbook on the Sources of International Law

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Book Chapter

Sources and the Legality and Validity of International Law: Natural Law as Source of Extra-Positive Norms, in The Oxford Handbook on the Sources of International Law 562 (Samantha Besson & Jean D’Aspremont eds., 2017).

This chapter posits that international law, like all law, can be understood as a hybrid of positive and natural law. The history of natural law from Ancient Greece to today’s global community reveals that the method used for centuries to explain extra-positive features of law consists of three integral elements. The method uses reason, reflection on nature, and openness to transcendence. Certain contemporary natural law theorists, however, prefer to focus on reason and nature alone. Yet, the history of natural law thinking shows that transcendence is integral to the method. History also reveals that religion is not the only avenue to transcendence. Transcendence completes a natural law method capable of explaining persuasively why law binds in general and why certain principles are superior to positive law.

ISBN

9780198745365

Publication Date

1-13-2018

Publisher

Oxford University Press

Keywords

law, international la natural law, positivism, reason, nature, transcendence, aesthetics, jus cogens, general principles, authority, w

Disciplines

International Law | Law | Natural Law

The Oxford Handbook on the Sources of International Law

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