In the history of international law, the socialist bloc has been generally relegated to the role of roadblock in fulfilling the ideals of Western liberalism. This conference seeks to question established narratives that have ignored or downplayed the role of state-socialist governments and legal experts in shaping the evolution of international criminal and humanitarian law after the end of the Second World War. With a geographic scope covering the Soviet Union, the Eastern Bloc, Africa, and China, the conference explores the socialist world’s doctrines and international engagements concerning the codification of different international crimes [including crimes against peace, the crimes of aggression, Apartheid, terrorism, slavery, narcotics trafficking and more], approaches to humanitarian intervention, and the relationship between state sovereignty and international law. The conference advances the idea that rather than simply block progress, socialist initiatives played a vital role in the production of norms and ideas that continue to be relevant for the current international criminal and humanitarian legal system.
See the brochure of the conference here.
State Socialism, Legal Experts and the Genesis of International Criminal and Humanitarian Law after 1945
(Humboldt University of Berlin, November 24-26, 2016)
Call for Papers
In the history of international law, the socialist bloc has been generally relegated to the role of roadblock to the fulfillment of the ideals of Western liberalism. Scholars of international criminal law (ICL) and international humanitarian law (IHL) have often dismissed the contributions of socialist legal initiatives as little more than Cold War propaganda and thus irrelevant to understanding the historical evolution of judicial norms and the modern international system. The establishment of different international tribunals since the collapse of the Soviet Union has only reinforced the notion that the socialist world was little more than an impediment to progress. Nevertheless, the American-led global war on terror has done much to call into question Western commitment to the laws of war. Continue reading International Conference “State Socialism, Legal Experts and the Genesis of International Criminal and Humanitarian Law after 1945”
by Raluca Grosescu, at Experts, Globalisation and Transformation in Late and Post-Socialism, University of Exeter – Department of History, Exeter 6-7 November 2015.