“International Lawyers’ Failing. Outlawing Weapons as an Imperfect Project of Classical Law of War.”

When/Where: Monday, September 24 at 13:00 in New Chancellor Day Hall in room 316, McGill Faculty of Law 
22 September, 2018


The industrial revolution and subsequent technological progress enabled the production and use of a new range of weapons and military equipment. How did international law and lawyers react to this development? What arguments based on legal doctrine were in favour of or against outlawing “uniquely evil” weapons?

Professor Milos Vec will discuss how the self-perceptions of nineteenth-century international lawyers and their beliefs in the progress of technology and civilization were overshadowed by Eurocentrism. He will supply evidence how such attitudes contributed to the failure of the project of outlawing weapon.

About the Presenter: Miloš Vec is Professor of European Legal and Constitutional History at Vienna University and a Permanent Fellow at the Institute for Human Sciences (IWM, Vienna). Habilitation in Legal History, Philosophy of Law, Theory of Law, and Civil Law from Goethe University Frankfurt am Main. Until 2012 he worked at the Max-Planck-Institute for European Legal History and taught there. Further teaching at the Universities of Bonn, Hamburg, Konstanz, Lyon, Tübingen, and Vilnius. Fellow to the Wissenschaftskolleg, Berlin, 2011/2012; Senior Global Hauser Fellow at NYU in 2017; associate member of the Cluster of Excellence “Normative Orders” at Frankfurt University. Free-lance journalist, particularly for Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung.





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