Balance of Power and Norm Hierarchy: Franco-British Diplomacy after the Peace of Utrecht offers a detailed study of French and British diplomacy in the age of ‘Walpole and Fleury’. After Louis XIV’s decease, European international relations were dominated by the collaboration between James Stanhope and Guillaume Dubois. Their alliance focused on the amendment and enlargement of the peace treaties of Utrecht, Rastatt and Baden. In-depth analysis of vast archival material uncovers the practical legal arguments used between Hampton Court and Versailles. ‘Balance of Power’ or ‘Tranquillity of Europe’ were in fact metaphors for the predominance of treaty law even over the most fundamental municipal norms. An implacable logic of norm hierarchy allowed to consolidate peace in Europe.
Dr. Frederik Dhondt (1984) studied law (Ghent University), history (Ghent/Paris-Sorbonne) and international relations (Sciences Po Paris) and was a visiting researcher in Frankfurt, Heidelberg and Geneva. He currently is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow of the Research Foundation Flanders (Ghent University).
"An impressive amount of work has gone into this study, and it is to be welcomed that this period is singled out as being more distinctive than has often been assumed...Dhondt proposes an important and original way to evaluate a wealth of diplomatic and legal documents."
-Peter Schröder, University College London
All interested in European legal history and/or the history of public international law, diplomacy, French or British history, Ancien Régime European international relations, 18th century history.