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Norms Without the Great Powers – International Law and Changing Social Standards in World Politics - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Norms Without the Great Powers: International Law and Changing Social Standards in World Politics

Adam Bower


Can multilateral treaties succeed in transforming conduct when they are rejected by the most powerful states in the international system? In the past two decades, coalitions of middle-power states and transnational civil society groups have negotiated binding legal agreements in the face of concerted opposition from China, Russia, and—most especially—the United States. These instances of a so-called ‘new diplomacy’ reflect a deliberate attempt to use the language of international law to bypass great power objections in establishing new global standards. Yet critics have frequently derided such ... More

Keywords: international relations theory, international law, norms, constructivism, great powers, antipersonnel mines, Mine Ban Treaty, Rome Statute, International Criminal Court

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2017 Print ISBN-13: 9780198789871
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2017 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198789871.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Adam Bower, author
Lecturer in International Relations, University of St Andrews