Two central questions are at the core of international legal theory: 'What is international law?', and 'Is international law really law?' This volume examines these critical questions and the philosophical foundations of modern international law using the tools of Anglo-American legal theory and western political thought. Engaging with both contemporary and historical legal theory and with an analysis of international law in action, the book builds an understanding and theory of law from the perspective of those who actually use this legal system and understand it, rather than constructing an artificial system from the standpoint of political scientists and moral philosophers. Law at the Vanishing Point provides a fascinating new challenge to those who reduce international law either to ethics or to politics and provides a critical new appraisal of its power as an independent force in human social relations.
'Those who are skeptical about the existence and power of international law should read Fichtelberg’s book. Arguing more from various examples of international law, rather than from abstract and questionable principles, he will convince many of these skeptics to abandon their cause. Believers will also profit by reading his book. They will come away with a better understanding of their own views on international law.' Nick Fotion, Emory University, Atlanta, USA 'For forty odd years I have made a living teaching, writing about and sometimes even doing international law. Yet I have been consistently haunted and taunted by those who deny that the subject is "real". Fichtelberg slays all the dragons that I have encountered in a lifetime - and then some. Spot on!' Roger S. Clark, Rutgers School of Law, USA '…[this book] offers both a good overview and a strong argument as to why we should spend less time focusing on theory and more examining the law as it should be…a valuable addition to the literature.' Law Society Journal 'Recommended. Upper-division undergraduate through professional collections. CHOICE