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On My Way In III: It’s Not All About Me: Writing a Cover Letter for an Academic Position

Some texts are key to scholarly careers – cover letters, letters of reference, curricula vitae – yet are never intended for publication. They are – perhaps in part for that reason – under-scrutinized genres of academic writing. When one serves on an appointment panel, one inevitably reads hundreds of samples of such texts, provoking reflection on what makes them effective (which in turn generates ideas for the next time that one oneself must produce these dreaded documents again). Inspired by Joseph Weiler’s series On My Way Out: Advice to Young Scholars, this piece, which emerged from conversations with Devon Curtis and Sara Kendall, and developed thanks to reactions from members of the EJIL editorial team (Anny, Ana, JHHW, Orfeas and Wanshu), reflects on the cover letter as a genre of academic writing. 1 The Argument of a Cover Letter Seeing the cover letter as a genre of academic writing means recognizing that it presents an opportunity to make an argument. But what should that argument be about? Many cover letters read as…

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In This Issue – Reviews

This issue features reviews of three monographs, two engaging with non-Western approaches to international law, the other with a central question of the jus ad bellum. We begin with Lauri Mälksoo’s review of Russian Contributions to International Humanitarian Law by Michael Riepl. Published on the eve of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, this is a timely book if ever there was one, and it…

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In This Issue

This issue of EJIL opens with a call to disorder international law. Michelle Staggs Kelsall invites international lawyers to let go of liberal vocabularies and reframe how the international legal order is constituted by conceiving of norms, conventions and principles with reference to a multiplicity of spatial and temporal orders. The next article, by contrast, aims to bring…

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Desk Rejections

I know the feeling. It has happened to me more than once, twice and thrice. ‘They didn’t even send it to peer review?!*&%#@.’ On one occasion it was subsequently published in another journal and is one of my most cited pieces! Regrettably, neither EJIL nor I•CON has the human resources to send a fully reasoned letter…

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In This Issue – Reviews

The Review Section of this issue features one review essay and five regular reviews. We begin with Jean d’Aspremont’s essay on Anne Orford’s International Law and the Politics of History, a wide-ranging discussion that situates Orford’s critique of contextualism and empiricism in scholarly accounts of international law and its history. D’Aspremont finds Orford’s critique ‘uncontestable’, but at the same time…

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