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Understanding Jus Cogens in International Law and International Legal Discourse

Ulf Linderfalk

Whilst the concept of jus cogens has grown increasingly more important in public international law, lawyers remain hugely divided both over what precisely confers a jus cogens status on a norm, and what this conferral implies in terms of legal consequences. In this ground-breaking book, Ulf Linderfalk clearly and succinctly explores the reasons for this divide in order to facilitate more rational and productive future discourse.
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Ulf Linderfalk


1.    Introduction

1.1  Researching the jus cogens regime

1.2  In search of identifying criteria

1.2.1  The significance of the Vienna Convention

1.2.2  Identifying criteria suggested by discussants

1.2.3  The many suggested examples of jus cogens norms

1.3  In search of legal consequences

1.3.1  The significance of the Vienna Convention

1.3.2  The many suggested examples of legal consequences

1.3.3  Why discussants disagree

1.4  Ways ahead: the necessity of a metaperspective

2.    Legal positivism and legal idealism

2.1  Introduction

2.2  Legal positivism

2.2.1  The concept of law

2.2.2  Law and value

2.2.3  The validity of legal norms

2.2.4  Law and legal structure

2.2.5  Law and social order

2.3  Legal idealism

2.3.1  Law and social order

2.3.2  Law and value

2.3.3  The validity of legal norms

2.3.4  Law and legal structure

3.    The source of jus cogens obligations and no-competences

3.1  Introduction

3.2  Legal positivism

3.2.1  The challenge

3.2.2  Creating and establishing law

3.2.3  The source of jus cogens obligations and no-competences

3.3  Legal idealism

3.3.1  Appeals from the contrary

3.3.2  The legal idealist’s explanation in positive terms

4.    The role of state consent in the creation and modification of jus cogens norms

4.1  Introduction

4.2  Modification of jus cogens norms

4.2.1  Legal positivism

4.2.2  Legal idealism

4.3  The role of state consent

4.3.1  Legal positivism

4.3.2  Legal idealism

5.    The identification of jus cogens norms

5.1  Introduction

5.2  The necessary justification

5.2.1  Legal positivism

5.2.2  Legal idealism

5.3  How to provide justification

5.3.1  Legal positivism

5.3.2  Legal idealism

6.    The scope of jus cogens: possible delimitations of the concept

6.1  Introduction

6.2  The personal scope of application of jus cogens norms

6.2.1  Legal positivism

6.2.2  Legal idealism

6.3  Jus cogens norms as obligations erga omnes

6.3.1  Legal positivism

6.3.2  Legal idealism

6.4  Norms having the character of a principle

6.4.1  Legal positivism

6.4.2  Legal idealism

7.    Jus cogens and the concept of a normative conflict

7.1  Introduction

7.2  The concept of a conflict of norms

7.3  The proper definition in context

7.3.1  Legal positivism

7.3.2  Legal idealism

7.3.3  Jurisdictional immunities of the state

8.    Jus cogens and the individuation of norms

8.1  Introduction

8.2  The proper criteria for the individuation of norms

8.2.1  Legal positivism

8.2.2  Legal idealism

8.3  Exceptions to jus cogens norms

8.3.1  Legal positivism

8.3.2  Legal idealism

8.4  The enforcement of primary jus cogens obligations

8.4.1  Legal positivism

8.4.2  Legal idealism

8.5  Jus cogens and international responsibility law

8.5.1  Legal positivism

8.5.2  Legal idealism

9.    Significance of the findings for future international legal discourse

9.1  The findings of the investigation

9.2  Outlook for future international legal discourse

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