Document Type


Journal Title

Proceedings of the Annual Meeting (American Society of International Law) April 12-15 2017



First Page


Publication Date



The central topic of this year’s annual meeting of the American Society of International Law has been “What International Law Values,” restated more forcefully in the title of this panel, “The Value and Purpose of International Law.” Notice the underlying assumption: that international law has value and serves some useful purpose. This premise is important because it supplies the basis on which international law seeks to secure our obedience and respect. We have no reason to obey or respect international law unless international law has some value or serves some useful purpose. This leads us to consider what this value and purpose might be. Which values and what purpose does international law exist to serve? Or, more important, which values and purpose would international law have to serve or advance if it were to deserve our obedience or respect? The answer can be given in one word: justice. Justice is the value that justifies or could justify international law, and justice is the purpose that international law properly seeks to serve and protect.

Included in

Law Commons



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.