Theories of International Law

Theories of International Law

Theories of law are perhaps even more important in international law because they enable a lawyer to anticipate the law’s application in a landscape complicated by politics and power disparities.


In this lesson, we’ll examine some of the main theories underlying international law. There are countless such theories, but we’ll focus on the most influential.

I.               Jurisprudence

Legal theory is also called jurisprudence. This simply means the theoretical or philosophical reasoning we use to explain why the law is the way it is and why we’re obliged to follow it. Because international law is decentralized,...