Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 18 January 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter finds that questioning the normativity of the sources of international law inevitably leads into the domain of legal philosophy. For showing that legal philosophy itself is a contested field of approaches, a hermeneutic perspective on the question of normativity is developed that stresses historical and contextual forms of understanding. Incidentally, Kelsen’s theory serves as a switchboard to relate a variety of historical debates to the contemporary discourse in the tradition of analytical jurisprudence. In practical terms, the relevance of this approach is discussed regarding three contested topics: the status of general principles, soft law, and practical reasoning. The historical and theoretical awareness thus achieved provides reasons to oppose contemporary attempts to moralize the legal point of view.

Keywords: Soft law, General principles of international law, Sources of international law

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.