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The Justification of War and International Order – From Past to Present - Oxford Scholarship Online
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The Justification of War and International Order: From Past to Present

Lothar Brock and Hendrik Simon


The history of war is also a history of its justification. The contributions to this book argue that the justification of war rarely happens as empty propaganda. While it is directed at mobilizing support and reducing resistance, it is not purely instrumental. Rather, the justification of force is part of an incessant struggle over what is to count as justifiable behaviour in a given historical constellation of power, interests, and norms. This way, the justification of specific wars interacts with international order as a normative frame of reference for dealing with conflict. The justificati ... More

Keywords: war, justification, critique, international order, power, principle, use of force, jus ad bellum, past and present, theory and practice

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2021 Print ISBN-13: 9780198865308
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2021 DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198865308.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Lothar Brock, editor
Senior Professor, Goethe-University Frankfurt

Hendrik Simon, editor
Research Associate, Peace Research Institute Frankfurt

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Part I Basic Theoretical Considerations: On War and Order(s)

Part II The Early Modern War Discourse: A Process of Transformation?

Part III The Nineteenth Century as the Birth Era of the Modern War Discourse

Part IV From the League to the UN: The Universe of Western International Legal Order Revealing its Self-Contradictions

Part V ‘Democratic Wars’ and the Post-Cold War International Order: Rise and Decline of the ‘Liberal Peace’

Part VI Alternative Paths: Non-Western Perspectives on the Justification of War and International Order from Past to Present

Part VII International Rule of Law: Justifying, Contesting, and Perpetuating the Use of Force

An Attempt at a Synthesis

End Matter