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Part I Histories, Ch.13 International Legal Theory in Russia: A Civilizational Perspective, or Can Individuals be Subjects of International Law?

Lauri Mälksoo

From: The Oxford Handbook of the Theory of International Law

Edited By: Anne Orford, Florian Hoffmann

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2023. All Rights Reserved.date: 24 June 2024

Customary international law — General principles of international law — Sources of international law

This chapter argues that the concept of ‘civilization’ may be a useful analytical lens to look through for making sense of international legal theory outside the West. Specifically, it focuses on international legal theory in Russia and in the Russian language, broadly sketching an international legal theory in the country from the mid-nineteenth century onwards. Throughout the last few centuries, other non-Western civilizations have struggled with the predominance of the West, and have related and referred to it one way or another. Therefore, this dialogue — and often contest — of civilizations and the ways they have been constructed by political leaders and intellectuals has left its marks on international legal theory as well. For one reason or another, but perhaps also for reasons of cultures, histories, and civilizations differing from each other, scholars outside the West such as in Russia tend to put different emphases in terms of how they construct international law.

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