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This short post is directly addressed to all those who are email subscribers to The International Jurist.
With the move, the initial “mailing list” will cease to function. However, I am working on getting an email subscription service on The International Jurist.org, probably via Feedburner. I’ll try to get it up as soon as possible, but you’ll have to resubscribe there once it is installed.
Thank you for your patience,
It has taken a while, but I have finally set up The International Jurist over at http://www.theinternationaljurist.org.
See you there!
It is time to share some news regarding this blog, for those who are interested.
First of all, I have been trying for almost a week now to transfer The International Jurist to its own web host with WordPress.org. The result I have so far is here: http://www.theinternationaljurist.org. I am not nearly as happy with it as I thought I would be, the theme not corresponding to the one available here on WordPress.com, and the whole transfer/setting up was a lot more complicated than I expected.
As matter of fact, if there are WordPress(.org) experts among readers of this blog, please contact me. I have a few questions for you.
Until I get theinternationaljurist.org working as it should, the blog will remain here hosted at wordpress.com.
I have just finished reading Jean d’Aspremont’s latest post over at EJIL: Talk! on the value of legal blogging and, feeling particularly conflicted on the matter, I cannot resist the temptation to put in my two cents.
Jean d’Aspremont’s post, titled ‘In Defense of the Hazardous Tool of Legal Blogging’, is a very well-written piece on the limits and the value of legal blogging, with an emphasis on the latter. It would appear that there is an ongoing debate in legal scholar circles about the purpose, effect, and merit of legal blogging, in particular over at the Yale Law Journal website (see this post in particular).
Dr. d’Aspremont makes very interesting points, and juggles certain ideas and purposes of legal blogging that I have toyed with since I created The International Jurist now more than six months ago, although admittedly in a far more eloquent and thought-out manner than I ever did.
I particularly appreciate certain arguments he puts forward, such as the usefulness of blogs to share and experiment with certain ideas at an earlier stage than possible with peer-reviewed publications, to inform each other of developments in each blogger’s area of expertise, and all in all, create a place for informal discussion and debate among ourselves and whomever wishes to join us that is not limited to the coffee breaks of a conference on international law at the Peace Palace or elsewhere (I sometimes get the impression that lawyers and academics come to such conferences more for the coffee break to meet colleagues than for the conferences themselves).
And yet, on the other hand, I have a deep feeling of irritation that certain legal scholars take themselves so seriously and yet are so insecure to feel that legal blogging threatens their realm of scholarship that they need to debate and criticize the value of legal blogging. (I am obviously not talking about Dr. d’Aspremont here.) There is no rational reason why this debate is having place, and I have a feeling that only legal scholars could entertain such a thing. As Jean d’Aspremont very rightly quotes and supports another participant in this surprising debate, Ann Althouse, let the law journal be the law journal and the blog be the blog. End of story.
Speaking for myself, I have no pretension of any sorts writing this blog. When I created it, I was a modest Public International Law LLM student in Leicester a little too enthusiastic about the issues and challenges of the subject-matter of my studies. Today, I am a humble legal intern working in the International Criminal Justice system. I write this blog because I encounter in my readings and work thought-provoking items and events that I enjoy sharing and discussing. I enjoy writing. I test different styles. I think about different themes. I experiment with ideas – yes, even half-baked ones. The International Jurist has no aspiration to compete with expert blogs such as EJIL: Talk! or Opinio Juris or any other similar websites, let alone legal journals, and I’m sure most other legal bloggers feel the same way.
So why are we having this debate?
And honestly, is it a problem if I put out a half-baked idea once in a while? Because after all, when that happens, I trust fellow legal blogger, regular commenter, and altogether far more knowledgeable jurist Dov Jacobs will be there to call me out on it. Right, Dov?
I have been meaning to make the promotion of a recently created blog on North Africa and the Middle East, al-Wasat, edited by my good Twitter friends Andrew Lebovich (@tweetsintheME) and Aaron Zelin (@azelin) for a while, and I can think of no better occasion (although, at the risk of appearing slightly self-interested, I must admit) then now that they have published my first guest post there on the African Union’s recent efforts to put together a comprehensive counterterrorism regional treaty and what it could mean for the international law of terrorism.
Regardless at the exercise of shameless self-promotion I just indulged in, I would like to say a few words about the blog al-Wasat, regardless of the fact that they have been crazy enough (I mean, kind enough) to publish one of my posts. al-Wasat, which means ‘The Center’ in Arabic, is a blog recently created by two friends and experts in the field of counterterrorism and North Africa (Andrew) and radical Islam (Aaron). They have managed to gather other experts (PhD students and others) to contribute to their blog which covers the news coming out of these regions of the world, offering pertinent and refreshing analysis of what happens there.
This kind of blog is interesting to follow, even for lawyers. We have to remind ourselves – well, I sometimes do anyway (French law students are the worse on that matter) – that we do not operate in a vacuum, and reading these blogs written by experts give us the material necessary to reflect on what we are trying to achieve and how to apply our knowledge to reality. Because, after all, that is what law is really about.
The International Jurist is a project initiated by several LLM students from the Public International Law and Legal Research streams at the University of Leicester, in the UK. Its purpose is to publish perspectives and opinions on the current state of international law and its future, in relation to international affairs.
We are particularly interested in International Humanitarian Law (the Law of Armed Conflicts), Human Rights Law and Transitional Justice & International Criminal Law, as well as Comparative Law. That being said, the purpose is for us to discuss anything we encounter and find interesting, so do not be surprised to see certain posts that appear to be only distantly related to international and comparative law.
Posts will mostly be in English, but contributions in French are equally welcome.
So expect short and long posts, links, opinions, and the eventual off-topic rant. All done in an argumentative, thought-out manner, and hopefully, not without a little humor.
Welcome to the International Jurist blog!
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