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Lawyers and Precedent

PDF · Harlan Grant Cohen · Nov-8-2013 · 46 VAND. J. TRANSNAT’L L. 1025 (2013)

Any account of international law that does not explain the role of lawyers will necessarily be deficient. This is particularly the case with regard to the mysterious power of precedent in international law. Regardless of precedent’s formal role in international law, lawyers and judges regularly invoke it, respond to it, and cite it as authority.  Can studying lawyers help explain when prior interpretations of international law rules will carry weight, when those interpretations will frame future arguments, and maybe, when those interpretations will burden decisions about compliance?




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ANNOUNCEMENTS

We are pleased to announce the 2013-2014 VJTL New Members

Coming up:

The Vanderbilt Journal of Transnational Law hosted a symposium called “The Role of Non-State Actors in International Law” at Vanderbilt University Law School in February 2013.

The October issue of the Journal will showcase articles by distinguished symposium guests including:

  • Mr. Ian Smillie, “Blood Diamonds and Non-State Actors”
  • Professor Jean d’Aspremont, “Cognitive Conflicts and the Making of International Law from Empirical Concord to Conceptual Discord in Legal Scholarship”
  • Professor Peter J. Spiro, “Constraining Global Corporate Power: A Very Short Introduction”
  • Professor Suzanne Katzenstein
  • Professor Peter Margulies
  • Professor Harlan G. Cohen

 

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