We begin this issue with four articles which, each in their own way, return to the foundations of international law. The first two contributions challenge the traditional statist paradigm informing our contemporary understanding and conceptualization of international law. While Rafael Domingo, based on a careful analysis of the Roman and Enlightenment roots of international law, advocates for the creation of a new global cosmopolitan paradigm, Monique Chemillier-Gendreau, by revisiting the theoretical contribution of the French Reims Doctrine, calls for the reactivation of a critical approach to international law. The following two contributions focus on specific regimes of international law and shift the compass more to the South. Solomon Ebobrah analyses the positive contribution that complementarity can have towards fruitful inter-institutional relationships and the effectiveness of the African human rights system. Then Juan Marchetti and Petros Mavroidis offer a geology of the GATS negotiations and aim to shed light on its rationale through careful examination of the interaction between developed and developing countries before and during the Uruguay Round. This is a foundational piece.
In our occasional series, The European Tradition in International Law, orchestrated for this issue by Christian Tams, tribute is paid to the singular life and work of the international scholar and political activist: Walther Schücking. Following Christian Tam’s Introduction, Frank Bodendiek, Mónica García Salmones, Ole Spiermann and Jost Delbrück depict a vibrant portrait of Schücking’s multi-faceted life: the scholar, the idealist, the judge, in other words: the intellectuel engagé.
To follow, we invite you to pause for a moment and contemplate Roaming Charges: Moments of Dignity – Polish Youth on Warsaw’s Pilsudski Square.
Our journey in international law continues with two occasional series: Critical Review of International Governance and Critical Review of International Governance and Jurisprudence. The first features an article by Ronagh McQuigg, who seeks to answer the ever-green question: ‘How Effective is the United Nations Committee Against Torture?’ In the second, Stefano Piedimonte Bodini examines the legal implications of anti-piracy operations within the framework of the European Convention on Human Rights.
In this issue’s EJIL: Debate!, Alexander Orakhelashvili replies to Dapo Akande and Sangeeta Shah’s objection – which they formulated within the framework of a symposium on sovereign immunity published in EJIL issue 21:4 (2010) – to his position that a state engaging in violations of jus cogens has no entitlement under international law to claim immunity before foreign courts. The rejoinder offered by Dapo Akande and Sangeeta Shah shows that the conceptualization of state immunity, beyond the question of primacy of jus cogens over state immunity, is in itself an issue open to debate that EJIL is happy to host. This, in our view, is one of those occasions where we are reassured that the debate format can yield results which otherwise would be hard to come by.
In this issue we publish a Review Essay by Reut Yael Paz that touches on a son’s captivating account of the life of his father, both being eminent international lawyers: Elihu Lauterpacht’s The Life of Sir Hersch Lauterpacht. Furthermore, for the first time, we publish a more comprehensive Literature Review Essay by Stephan W. Schill on the literature and sociology of international investment law.
The issue concludes with the poem The Poplars of East and West by the late Eric Stein