Edited by Emilios Christodoulidis, Ruth Dukes and Marco Goldoni
Chapter 24: International economic law’s wreckage: depoliticization, inequality, precarity
By purporting to depoliticize markets, international economic law complicates solutions to precarity and inequality within and between states and regions. Separating out markets from ordinary politics, the novel legal orders of trade and investment choose winners and losers, determining who will adapt to whom so as to render their policy goals most efficacious. In so doing, trade and investment law expresses preferences about how political and social life should be organized, rendering solutions to pressing social problems more difficult to address. This chapter interrogates these two legal regimes, arguing that they exhibit a similar tilt that favours global capital, precipitating similar legitimacy problems, and kindred responses that aim to manage the fallout. They reveal, in other words, startling comparable trajectories that rely on similar techniques to manage resistance. International economic law’s plan of action turns out to be unified: to deflect critique, disarm states and weaponize legal rules. We conclude that, so long as international economic law does not take precarity and inequality seriously, its trade and investment regimes will remain vulnerable to political blowback.
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
Elgaronline requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals. Please login through your library system or with your personal username and password on the homepage.
Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/ extracts and download selected front matter and introductory chapters for personal use.
Your library may not have purchased all subject areas. If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.