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  • Print publication year: 2019
  • Online publication date: July 2019

Introduction

Summary

Sovereignty is the ‘boomerang’ concept of Western legal and political thought. For all the best efforts of scholars, politicians, lawyers and citizens to consign it to oblivion, sovereignty always returns, typically with a vengeance. The more its normative and explanatory force and its political valence are challenged, the more ubiquitous the concept of sovereignty seems to become. Unsurprisingly then, despite the recent intensification of supranational and transnational patterns of legal and political authority, once believed to be one more – and perhaps final – nail in sovereignty’s coffin, we stand today at yet another critical juncture, with sovereignty flying back in our faces.

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