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Can territory be decolonised? In one crucial sense, the answer is yes. In a moment when the ‘threat of recolonisation haunts the third world’, the battles fought by the anti-colonial movements of the twentieth century for official recognition of political independence should not be disremembered, or their gains underestimated. But can the concept of territory be decolonised? Building on TWAIL, Indigenous and decolonial scholarly interventions, this chapter revisits the international law of territory to argue that there are two senses in which the question must be answered in the negative. The concept of territory is a Eurocentric construction of the rightful relationship between community, authority, and place. Not only does that construction rely on the ontological rupture between human subject and natural object that characterises European Enlightenment philosophy; it erases the physical Earth itself, replacing it with an abstract object over which sovereignty is exercised or space within which jurisdiction is asserted. The concept of territory in international law thereby presumes the objectification of ‘nature’ necessary for the propertisation and commodification of Earth.
This chapter explores the understanding of nature reflected in the international legal classification of territory, as reflected in the doctrines of terra nullius, res communis and the common heritage of mankind. It provides an overview and analysis of each of these concepts, noting the frequently problematic role they have played in legitimating the exercise of political and economic power. It then analyses the continuities and discontinuities between these categories. It argues that, despite surface changes, a narrow instrumental view of nature and the environment continues to be deeply embedded in much of our current thinking about jurisdiction over territory, and can be seen as constituting one of the ongoing barriers to thinking about the environment in more innovative and sustainable ways.
In the introduction we describe the “wicked” global property problem of homeless squatting on empty land or in empty properties and outline some key themes explored in the book. We reflect on the nature of squatting as a property problem; and introduce the concept of “scale,” which we deploy throughout the book to describe the dynamic nature of state responses to squatting. We outline the importance of seeing “the state” in the analyses of squatting and other property problems, through its interactions with individuals, interactions with other state-bodies, and interactions with its territory, and interactions with its own institutions. Finally, we set out the structure and approach followed in the book, including reference to five primary jurisdictions: the USA, Ireland, Spain, South Africa and England and Wales.
Chapter 11 examines human migrations through time – past, present and future. It explains how what we learn from human prehistory is useful for dealing with the problems of racism and nationalism plaguing humanity in today’s world.
This article reviews the “gaps” that allow for the creation of the “offshore” in international law and argues that these are instead constituted by constraints on our spatial imaginary of law than by any “real” gaps between state jurisdictions. The modern practices of sovereignty by states and non-state actors are at odds with the implicit geography of international law that assumes a static and fixed concept of territory. By rethinking the relevant legal spaces of international law and the sovereign practices that constitute the supposedly deterritorialized offshore, we can see that the offshore is actually onshore somewhere; we can reterritorialize the supposed deterritorialized competences. This article identifies a desynchronization between state territories and the actual exercise of sovereignty that presents as pseudo deterritorialization. Yet if both the concept of sovereignty and the implicit geography of international law confirm and reinforce one another in international law discourse, international lawyers are blind to the changing “landscape” of sovereignty in international law.
At the outset, this Chapter will show that officials from the United States resolve the most important insular matters not solely undemocratically but especially taking U.S. interests into account. It will affirm that they may have thus contributed to the territorial socio-economic ails, which have, in turn, fueled the current debt debacle. From this perspective, the United States should strive to democratize the dependency. It may advance such democratization outside rather than inside the Union in light of Congressional or on-site opposition to the latter option.
The cogitation will contemplate and ultimately reject the contention that the ex-isting arrangement violates individual civil rights or that Puerto Rico must become a state in order to vindicate them. It will stress that no such violation transpires since the treatment of Puerto Ricans does not differ from that of their fellow U.S. citizens. Specifically, anyone bearing the citizenship of the United States can exercise all the guaranties in question if she resides on the mainland (or Hawaii) yet not on the island (or any other territory, or abroad).
The discussion will then establish that the extant regime encroaches not upon the islanders’ personal entitlements but instead upon their collective self-determination. Ergo, vindication may consist in permitting the island to rule itself just as much as in admitting it into the federation. From this standpoint, the U.S. political establish-ment could simply amend the 1950 statute presently in force and pursue more suc-cessfully the same goal: namely, granting the dependency “self-governance” as an “as-sociated free state.” Within this wide framework, the association could flexibly develop over time toward either more or less cooperation between the parties.
Chapter 6 explores the possibility of composing higher-order macro-institutions, starting with micro-norms/rules and institutes and their mutual compatibility and balancing. A necessary precondition for power-sharing is monopolisation of destructive resources and ‘legitimate’ violence over a territorial space: the ‘territorial institution’. In territories in which destructive means have been successfully monopolised and there are no challenges to the ruling function, ‘fundamental norms’ or ‘constitutions’ may develop that delineate the institutional regime. The territory, the constitution and the institutional regime are macro-institutions located at the highest level in the vertical layering of institutions and are complex combinations of single norms/rules and institutes. But, as macro-phenomena, they are characterised by emerging properties that cannot exclusively be reduced to lower-level properties. Different regimes rest on the prominence of some institutes over others. In some cases, the predominant institutes damage the others excessively. In other cases, the institutes balance each other. The chapter suggests that institutional analysis generalisations should concern political institutes, their balancing and combination, and the likely effects. Actors’ preferences and constellations of actors should be kept separate from institutional analysis. Adding them results in generalisations concerning the interaction between political institutions and political structures; that is, in the analysis of ‘political regimes’.
Stefano Bartolini argues that, despite the growth of a large theoretical literature about institutions and institutionalism over the last thirty years, the specific nature of political institutions has been relatively neglected. Political institutions have been subsumed into the broader problems of the emergence, persistence, change and functions of all types of institutions. The author defines political institutions strictly as norms and rules of 'conferral', to be distinguished from norms/rules of 'conduct' and of 'recognition'. They are those norms and rules that empower rulers, set limits to the capacity to ensure behavioural compliance, and define the proper means for achieving such compliance. This book draws logical and empirical consequences from this understanding, to distinguish different types of norms/rules, and to specify the peculiarities of those norms/rules that are 'political'. The book will appeal to researchers of political institutions in comparative politics, and in political science and political sociology more broadly.
Chapter 15 addresses economic inequality and its impact on democracy in contemporary Latin America. It illustrates the significance of inequality with discussions of Brazil and Chile, and shows that wealth and income are unequally distributed and that certain categories of citizens (rural dwellers, indigenous people, informal workers) are among the poorest Latin Americans. It stresses that it is paradoxical that several decades after Latin America achieved democracy – a political system based on the idea that citizens are political equals – social inequality remains deep and pervasive. Yet it accounts for the difficulty faced by democratic governments in reducing economic inequality through redistributive policies in terms of the structural and instrumental power of economic elites, the control of the media by economic elites, and the actions of politicians and state agents. The chapter also stresses that persistent economic inequality has negative consequences on democracy and shows how recent political developments in Chile – for decades seen as the poster child of political and economic success in the region – are a warning sign against complacency with economic inequality.
Four theories are used to explain the causes and dynamics of violent conflict along the Oromia–Somali Border in eastern Ethiopia. Of these, political economy (greed versus grievance) and political ecology theories are instrumental in understanding the main drivers of violence. Politicization of ethnicity and the self-centered behavior of political elites have increased the complexity of the conflict. Fekadu Kenee demonstrates that peacebuilding efforts require respect for the outcomes of referendums on the disputed territorial units and revitalization of customary systems, among others. While customary institutions can resolve conflicts at least temporarily, sustained community dialogue needs to be part of the political reform to build lasting inter-regional peace.
The chapter reconstructs Jacob Grimm’s political thought in the 1840s when he emerged as a leader of the new association of Germanists and a prominent delegate in the first German national parliament. Speaking in different venues, Grimm declared his commitment to national unity and claimed it was supported by disciplinary knowledge of language, literature, law, and myth. In particular, he asserted that the linguistic scholar could demarcate national collectives on the basis of verifiable grammatical knowledge and by so doing provide states with a sound, even scientific foundation. The chapter analyzes how Grimm used research findings about the distinctiveness of different Germanic languages to suggest authoritative answers to questions about units of legitimate rule in the post-revolutionary era. Grimm was not a radical and did not wish to subvert monarchy, but he insisted on the coincidence of royal rule with a national homeland, the outlines of which were best traced by the philologist.
In the first comprehensive English-language portrait of Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm as political thinkers and actors, Jakob Norberg reveals how history's two most famous folklorists envisioned the role of literary and linguistic scholars in defining national identity. Convinced of the political relevance of their folk tale collections and grammatical studies, the Brothers Grimm argued that they could help disentangle language groups from one another, redraw the boundaries of states in Europe, and counsel kings and princes on the proper extent and character of their rule. They sought not only to recover and revive a neglected native culture for a contemporary audience, but also to facilitate a more harmonious and enduring relationship between the traditional political elite and an emerging national collective. Through close historical analysis, Norberg reconstructs how the Grimms wished to mediate between sovereigns and peoples, politics and culture. This title is also available as Open Access on Cambridge Core.
Warfare in the pre-Columbian Andes took on many forms, from inter-village raids to campaigns of conquest. Andean societies also created spectacular performances and artwork alluding to war – acts of symbolism that worked as political rhetoric while drawing on ancient beliefs about supernatural beings, warriors, and the dead. In this book, Elizabeth Arkush disentangles Andean warfare from Andean war-related spectacle and offers insights into how both evolved over time. Synthesizing the rich archaeological record of fortifications, skeletal injury, and material evidence, she presents fresh visions of war and politics among the Moche, Chimú, Inca, and pre-Inca societies of the conflict-ridden Andean highlands. The changing configurations of Andean power and violence serve as case studies to illustrate a sophisticated general model of the different forms of warfare in pre-modern societies. Arkush's book makes the complex pre-history of Andean warfare accessible by providing a birds-eye view of its major patterns and contrasts.
This chapter begins by introducing a number of foundational concepts, which serve as the starting point in the field of public international law. Section 1 of this chapter begins with the notion that states are sovereign equals, which must consent to be bound by nternational law. This section also introduces the critical distinction that international law makes between states and “non-state actors.” Section 2 of this chapter discusses the inevitable comparison of public international law with domestic legal systems, and the significant limitations of this analogy as a means for understanding the field of public international law. Section 3 concludes by explaining this book’s overarching structure, as well as the approach of this book to the introduction of public international law.
The law of neutrality introduces a concomitant set of rights and obligations between belligerents and neutrals. The law as it has settled at the turn of the twentieth century has remained the same in relation to its basic principles, and it has easily adapted to the evolution of the law of the sea, globalized trade and arms technology. The intrusiveness of belligerent practice in the form of exclusion zones, navicerts and distance blockade has become part of the law provided that it does not deviate from the humanitarian law of armed conflict. Moreover, the four Geneva Conventions and the First Additional Protocol admit a humanitarian role for neutral States.
This article traces the history of one geographical concept, hinterland, through changing political contexts from the 1880s through the 1970s. Hinterland proved a valuable tool for states attempting to challenge the global territorial order in both the Scramble for Africa and the postwar world of nation-states. In the context of German territorial demands in East Africa, colonial propagandists used hinterland to knit together the first longue-durée histories of the Indian Ocean to cast Zanzibar as a failed colonial power and win control of the coast. In the 1940s, Indian nationalists revived hinterland as a concept for writing about the Indian Ocean, utilizing the concept to link areas far from the ocean to an informal Indian empire that could be rebuilt to its premodern glory through naval expansion. In both contexts, hinterland provided a geographical framework to challenge British dominance on the Indian Ocean. The shifting meaning and usage of the term indicates continuities in territoriality between the Scramble for Africa and postwar internationalism.
This essay replies to three critics of my book Territorial Sovereignty: A Philosophical Exploration. First, in response to Kit Wellman, I defend the claim that states sometimes have a right against external interference even when their decisions depart from the requirements of social justice. This “right to do wrong” is grounded in respect for a legitimate procedure of collective self-determination, in which the state's members have an important interest. Second, I reply to Michael Blake's concern that there is an inconsistency in my treatment of people's actual wills in politics. I clarify that my view places weight on the actual wills only of “cooperators” (a technical term), and that cooperators’ actual wills matter because they have claims against alien rule. There is no inconsistency in treating political annexation differently from immigration since immigrants rarely threaten to impose alien rule on cooperators. Finally, I address Adom Getachew's concerns about the imperial dimensions of the states system, arguing that my book contains resources for theorizing remedial claims to land in settler colonial societies and other reparative duties of global justice.
This essay critically assesses Anna Stilz's argument in Territorial Sovereignty: A Philosophical Exploration that legitimate states have a right to do wrong. I concede that individuals enjoy a claim against external interference when they commit suberogatory acts, but I deny that the right to do wrong extends to acts that would violate the rights of others. If this is correct, then one must do more than merely invoke an individual's right to do wrong if one hopes to vindicate a legitimate state's right to commit injustices. Of course, there may be distinctive features of legitimate states that explain why they enjoy moral protections that individuals lack, but I argue that the value of collective self-determination is not up to this task. And even if these arguments fail, self-determination would at most explain why legitimate states enjoy a right to commit injustices against their own citizens; it would provide them no moral protection when they violate the rights of outsiders.
This article is about Indigenous territorial title and land rights, and specifically those of the Algonquin Anishinaabeg Nation. In 1983, the Algonquins of Pikwàkanagàn, residing in the province of Ontario, petitioned the Crown to recognize Algonquin territorial title and rights to 36,000 square kilometres of their natal homelands in the Ottawa River watershed. With negotiations beginning in the early 1990s, an Agreement-in-Principle was developed and ratified in 2016, the penultimate step to the largest modern treaty in Ontario's history. In this article, we examine the argument for moral rights to territory, not in terms of the Canadian or international legal order, nor even through examining the documents and voice of the Algonquin Anishinaabeg, but through the lens of an argument that has been advanced as the basis of the international territorial rights of states. We argue that the justifications for state rights territory—grounded in the considerations that ensue from an analysis of occupancy groups—provides a stronger claim to territorial jurisdiction and title in the case of the Algonquin Anishinaabeg Nation than the competing claim by the Canadian state.