The Political Interpretation of Multilateral Treaties

States have engaged in an intensive process of multilateral treaty making since World War Two despite the fact that few multilateral treaties have fully solved the problems they were designed to address. This inter-disciplinary study of multilateral treaties offers a balanced assessment of the function of multilateral treaties in world politics that draws out the political, as distinct from the legal, meaning of a treaty text. The treaty establishing a regime is regarded as an agreement to set some negotiated limits on pursuit of a common foreign policy goal so that full-blown pursuit of that goal will not bring the States into conflict nor jeopardize any State's pursuit of that goal. States are then able to continue pursuing that goal with, if anything, renewed vigour, albeit within the agreed limits. Theorising the relationship between a treaty text and its political context establishes a basis on which to critically reconceptualize regime effectiveness and on which to develop 'treaty strategy' for use by political actors, including international lawyers.

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Review Quotes

' Dans cette étude d'une grande portée théorique, l'articulation des idées et des argumentations complexes est imprégnée d'une logique et d'une rigueur exceptionnelles. Si la première partie (consacrée aux fondements théoriques du modèle d'interprétation proposé) peut paraître un peu lourde, elle est éclaircie pa la lecture complète de cette étude cohérente qui propose une nouvelle approche particulièrement intéressante.' M.Š., Extrait de l'Annuaire Francais de Droit Internationale, 2004.

Table of contents

Introduction, Acknowledgements, 1. Defining The Task, 2. The Colonialism CSC of Antarctic Governance, 3. The Chilean-Argentine Independence CSC of National Boundary Delimitation in the South American Antarctic, 4. The Scientism CSC of the Usage of Antarctica, 5. Proposing A Political Theory of Treaty Interpretation, 6. The International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling and the Introduction of a Moratorium on Commercial Whaling, 7. Article VI and the Durability of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Regime, 8. The Struggle for a Tight CSC Nexus: The Basel Convention and its Protocol, 9. The CEDAW Regime: Reconciling The Treaty Text with Political Reality, 10. Conclusions: Regime Effectiveness and Treaty Strategy.

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