Program

Charles A. Ryskamp Research Fellowships , ACLS Fellowship Program

Project

History and judisprudence of the United States Court for China

Project

China, For Example: China and the Making of Modern International Law

Department

Law

Named Award

supported in part by the Munro Fund for Chinese Thought

History and judisprudence of the United States Court for China

China, For Example: China and the Making of Modern International Law

There is no sustained historical and analytic treatment of China’s place in the making of modern international law. In broad outline conventional scholarship represents the modern Sino-Western encounter as a tragic cultural “misunderstanding” by China of such core Western values as sovereign equality and free trade among states. This project instead examines the encounter as a meeting between two different imperial formations, both of which classified states and peoples according to civilizational criteria, albeit with distinctive discursive justifications--Confucian and liberal. More broadly, it analyzes Western international law as an epistemological and cultural project the goal of which has been to turn the entire planet into a juridical formation consisting of nation-states.