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Statehood: A Grotian Moment 2

In: Grotiana
Author:
Milena SterioCleveland-Marshall College of Law, Cleveland, OH, USA, m.sterio@csuohio.edu

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Abstract

Grotian Moments are instances of accelerated formation of customary law, sparked by significant world events, such as wars, terrorism attacks, developments in technology, or natural catastrophes. This article will apply the Grotian Moment theory to the legal criteria of statehood, in an attempt to assess whether an evolution in specific elements of statehood has resulted in such paradigm-shifting Grotian Moments. In particular, this article will argue that the evolving political nature of our world order has contributed toward the need to re-conceptualize the legal theory of statehood. This article will thus posit that this constitutes a so-called Grotian Moment 2: a period of time when significant contestation of prevailing international legal norms and institutions occurs, and when novel thinking, norms and institutions attempt to replace elements of the old but may not succeed in doing so. This article posits that developments in the legal theory of statehood may be best described as Grotian Moment 2 although various historical and political developments have reshaped our contemporaneous conception of statehood, it may be argued that international law itself has neither contributed to the evolution of a new legal theory of statehood nor changed its own norms.

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