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The Rule of Law and the Challenges to Jurisprudence

Selected Papers Presented at the Fourth Central and Eastern European Forum for Legal, Political and Social Theorists, Celje, 23–24 March 2012


Edited By Péter Cserne, Miklós Könczöl and Marta Soniewicka

Over the last two decades scholars and citizens in Central and Eastern Europe had more than enough opportunity to realise that neither democracy nor the rule of law can be taken for granted. Such a realisation also means that if they want to think and speak clearly about or take a stand for their political and legal ideals, they need to reflect on them constantly, and conceptualise them in novel ways, by questioning entrenched lines of argument and problematising established patterns of thought. The contributors of this volume discuss a wide range of subjects from jurisprudential methodology and legal reasoning through democracy and constitutional courts to rights and criminal justice, raising questions and suggesting new ideas on «The Rule of Law and the Challenges to Jurisprudence» in Central and Eastern Europe and beyond.
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International Coercion and the Requirement of an International Rule of Law


Verena Risse


The requirement of a rule of law seems to be intrinsically linked with coercive institutions and these coercive institutions constitute an inherent part of our understanding of the state. In other words: if what is to be ruled by law is a powerful actor, what other powerful actors are there if only states possess a monopoly of power?

On the ground of these considerations, one could be reluctant to consider that something like an international rule of law is conceivable. At the same time, we experience an ongoing shift of power from the national to the international sphere and see the group of international institutional actors steadily increasing. Against this background, the question of whether an international rule of law is necessary has been discussed for some time now and the positions defended seem to be anything but homogeneous. In order to shed light on the debate, this paper will contrast the positions defended regarding an international dimension of the rule of law with a Kant-inspired interpretation of its origins. In the first paragraph, I shall start by laying out why one might be sceptical about an international rule of law and go on by sketching the development of international institutions. In a second step, the positions defended in the discussion shall be presented and classified. Spelling out three interpretations of the rule of law on the basis of Kant’s legal philosophy will be the object of the third...

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