26 June 2020

JOURNAL: Special Issue Histoire du droit international, ed. R. CAHEN, F. DHONDT & E. FIOCCHI MALASPINA] (Clio@Thémis: revue européenne électronique d'histoire du droit/European Electronic journal in Legal History n° 18 (2020)

(image source: Clio@Thémis)

L’essor récent de l’histoire du droit international (Raphaël Cahen, Elisabetta Fiocchi Malaspina & Frederik Dhondt)
First paragraph:
Ce dossier spécial est consacré à l’histoire du droit international. Il regroupe sept contributions portant sur divers aspects de cette sous-discipline de l’histoire du droit qui connaît un essor historiographique majeur dans le monde, mais plus relatif en France [1]. En effet, aucune section ne portait sur l’histoire du droit international dans l’ouvrage collectif récent qui présentait les tendances actuelles et les nouveaux champs de l’histoire du droit en France [2]. Néanmoins, on ne peut omettre de mentionner les travaux d’Emmanuelle Tourme-Jouannet, de Dominique Gaurier ou encore ceux de Dzovinar Kévonian et Philippe Rygiel qui font exception dans un champ académique français relativement peu fréquenté ni institutionnalisé [3].
Between private and public law : The contribution of late medieval ius commune to the conceptualisation of diplomatic representation (Dante Fedele)
This paper examines the development, by late medieval ius commune jurists, of a notion of diplomatic representation which is rooted in the doctrine of private law agency. In particular, it endeavours to study the basis and limits of ambassadors’ negotiating powers, by analysing some issues relating to procuration and the ratification of treaties. The conclusion illustrates the persistence of the central role of this notion of diplomatic representation in the discussion of the matter right up until the late eighteenth century, thus allowing us to appreciate the importance of the contribution made by late medieval ius commune to the early modern discussion of the status of the ambassador.
Renonciations et possession tranquille : l’abbé de Saint-Pierre, la paix d’Utrecht et la diplomatie de la Régence (Frederik Dhondt)
Abbot Saint-Pierre (1658-1743) is one of the most studied early 18th century political thinkers. His “utopian” project of perpetual peace was published during the Utrecht Peace Congress (1712-1713), where plenipotentiaries from various European powers ended the War of the Spanish Succession (1701-1714). As Merle Perkins demonstrated, Saint-Pierre’s conceptions on the state of nature and man’s violent instinct were similar to Hobbes’. Saint-Pierre, by contrast, believed in the possibility to overcome the violent state of nature. The key element here was the freezing of reciprocal legal claims by monarchs, which were always a source of conflict. Leaving quarrels behind, the “European Union” would be able to ensure the “tranquil possession” of sovereigns. The diplomatic context after the Peace of Utrecht was more compatible with his position than his first version (1712), wherein he castigated balance of power-politics. The peace was based on the mutual renunciations by the most prominent pretenders to the Spanish Succession. Saint-Pierre redacted the 1717 edition of his Projet to convince the Regent’s diplomats. Their efforts focused on finding a solution for the duchies of Parma and Piacenza, and the Grand-Duchy of Tuscany. The context of Regency diplomacy explains the attempts of Saint-Pierre to deliver a credible message, able to convince the actors of French foreign policy. 
Hauterive et l’école des diplomates (1800-1830) (Raphaël Cahen)
Alexandre d’Hauterive (1754-1830) was one of the most important members of the French foreign Office, from the time of the Directoire until the July Monarchy. Although one of the founders of a school of diplomats, which lasted until his death, d’Hauterive remains remarkably understudied in historiography. His diplomatic academy maintained an ambiguous relation with the law of nations. Despite numerous efforts and proposed projects, the diplomatic profession never fully professionalized during the thirty years of the academy’s existence. A biographical case-study of three former students of this school, all of whom eventually rose to the presidency of the Litigation committee of the French Foreign Office, will be used to analyse the Juridification of international relations.
 « Toil of the noble world » : Pasquale Stanislao Mancini, Augusto Pierantoni and the international legal discourse of 19th century Italy (Elisabetta Fiocchi Malaspina)
The aim of this article is to reconstruct, from a legal historical point of view, the complexity and the meaning of international law in the Italian peninsula during the 19th century. The paper will analyse different entanglements that constituted the core of nineteenth-century Italian international legal discourse. It is structured in four sections, dealing respectively with : 1) the principle of nationality elaborated by Pasquale Stanislao Mancini and its repercussion both on private and public international law ; 2) the return to the historical origins of Italian international law and the role played by comparative constitutional law ; 3) the implementation and translation of particular legal genres, such as the attempts to codify international law ; 4) colonial education, including legal education, through the creation of the Scuola diplomatico-coloniale (colonial and diplomatic school).
After the Great War : International Law in Austria’s First Republic, 1918–mid 1920 (Sebastian M Spitra)
This article studies the role of international law in the Austrian republic after the First World War – a time of hope and concerns for the international legal order. Although the war was perceived as backlash for international law, its scholarship expanded in Austria until the mid-1920 s. The Austrian international lawyers strived to integrate themselves in the broader transnational academic community. Their contribution to this field developed out of the constitutional debates of the Habsburg Empire. However, the Austrian jurists also omitted to treat certain international issues in their scholarship, such as the relief program by the League of Nations for Austria’s economy in crisis
Historiographies of International Law from a Chinese Perspective (Maria Adèle Carrai)
One objective of the emerging global history of international law is to broaden its scope in an attempt to overcome Eurocentrism. In this context, China, not only as an emerging global power that can influence the creation of the normative principles grounding the future world order, but also with its history of international law, offers a counter-teleology to the classic progress narrative of international law understood as a science. This article presents a critical summary and analysis of the approaches of a selection of Chinese scholars to the history of international law. The current debates seem to be closely linked to a new conception of modernity that does not correspond with the Western conception. The Chinese perspective, in this sense, can help broaden the history of international law, especially when that history claims to be global. 
Comment et pourquoi écrire l’histoire du droit international ? Le cas de l’abolition de l’esclavage (Anne-Charlotte Martineau)
Over the last decade, there have been debates opposing international lawyers on the one hand, and historians and legal historians on the other, on how and why to write the history of international law. The objective of this article is to participate in these debates through a case study : that of the abolition of slavery and its inclusion in the historiography of international law. The history of slavery and in particular that of its abolition has aroused renewed interest within the discipline of international law. Some international lawyers have turned to history in order to draw lessons from the successful ways in which international law ought to have abolished the transatlantic slave trade in the nineteenth century. Others have examined the history of the codification of slavery in international law in the light of European colonial imperialism. It will emerge from our analysis that international lawyers’ renewed interest in the history of slavery is rooted in the present, in the sense that they want to better understand the past in order to better act in the present. This presentism is not a problem in itself ; it becomes a problem only when the recourse to history ceases to be critical and serves merely to justify – and thus to perpetuate – existing professional projects and international legal institutions. 
 Read all articles in open access here.

(source: ESILHIL Blog)

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