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16 - The Cold War in Soviet International Legal Discourse

from Part III - The Parochial/Plural Cold War

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 December 2019

Matthew Craven
Affiliation:
School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London
Sundhya Pahuja
Affiliation:
University of Melbourne
Gerry Simpson
Affiliation:
London School of Economics and Political Science
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Summary

Borrowing Gerry Simpson’s taxonomy, it was and remains common to think of the Soviet Union as both a ‘great power’ and an ‘outlaw state’. Some historical accounts portray Soviet law as elaborate, specific and complex; but simultaneously, others portray ‘Soviet law’ as a sham. This essay argues that the Soviet approach to Cold War international law hews closer to the former image than the latter. It appears that Soviet faith in international law grew over the course of the Cold War, rather than diminished. This essay is a tentative sketch of the transformation of Soviet faith in law over the course of the Cold War.

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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2019

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