International Law in Art, Literature, Thought

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Tennyson’s “Locksley Hall”: A Disappointed Dream of Peace Through Law

In “Locksley Hall”–a lesser known masterpiece of Alfred, Lord Tennyson (pictured left)–a soldier ruminates on the disappointments of his youthful passion and idealism. Below is an excerpt in which the narrator reflects on his earlier vision of a future of peace through international law and commerce and his later disillusionment with that dream. The poem is remarkably post-modern given that it was first published in 1842. Despite the skepticism of the modernist, internationalist project expressed in the poem, Winston Churchill reportedly called it “the most wonderful of modern prophecies,” and U.S. President Harry Truman–in office when the UN was formed with his strong support–is said to have carried it in his wallet.  Here is the excerpt: Make me feel the wild pulsation that I felt before the strife, When I heard my days before me, and the tumult of my life;Yearning for the large excitement that the coming years would yield, Eager-hearted as a boy when first he leaves his father’s field,And at night along the dusky highway near and nearer drawn, Sees in heaven the light of London flaring like…

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The Peace of Utrecht in 1713, a Painting by Semiramis Öner Mühüdaroğlu

The Treaty of Utrecht was until recently one of the few major peace treaties that had not been commemorated in a painting or photograph. The  treaty was finally memorialized on the occasion of its 300-year anniversary last year in a painting (pictured left, click to enlarge) by Turkish artist Semiramis Öner Mühüdaroğlu. The Treaty of…

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“The City and the City” and Public International Law

The City and the City. It is, at its core, a novel about jurisdiction, and its setting is one of Miéville’s most fascinating creations. Miéville himself is no stranger to international law, being the author of Between Equal Rights: A Marxist Theory of International Law (2005). His novel demonstrates an unsurprising interest with the possibilities of law…

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