Framing Objects of International Law

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This chapter explores the different roles that material objects play in international law. It utilizes the ambiguity in the phrase ‘objects of international law’. First, this means that the objects concerned are somehow produced by international law; that they exist by virtue of the practices, scripts, and traditions in international law. The chapter develops this idea in section one, building on theories of attributes or properties (props) in theatre. Just like props in theatre, objects in law fulfil different functions, including the construction of subjectivity, setting in motion a chain of action, and symbolizing larger social–political topics. Second, the phrase ‘objects of international law’ refers to the signalling function of the objects concerned; they tell something about international law and its histories. This point is elaborated on in section two, based on museum and exhibition theories.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInternational Law's Objects
EditorsJesse Hohmann, Daniel Joyce
Place of PublicationOxford
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages13
ISBN (Electronic)9780191858642
ISBN (Print)9780198798200, 9780198798217
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Bibliographical note

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2019


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