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Traditional and Modern Approaches to Customary International Law: A Reconciliation

by Anthea Elizabeth Roberts
American Journal of International Law ()


There are two contemporary approaches to the determination of customary international law: the "traditional," which emphasizes state practice, and the "modern," which emphasizes opinio juris. This article proposes a theory of custom that incorporates both approaches, It rejects analyzing custom on a "sliding scale" in favor of a reflective interpretive approach that reconciles the descriptive and normative justifications for traditional and modern custom.

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43 Readers on Mendeley
by Discipline
74% Law
by Academic Status
35% Ph.D. Student
16% Student (Master)
9% Student (Postgraduate)
by Country
5% United Kingdom
2% Netherlands
2% Germany


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