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In a decentralized global system that lacks the formal trappings of domestic governance systems, most disputes between and among states and non-state actors never reach either a domestic or an international courtroom for authoritative resolution. This state of affairs continues, even with the creation of new international tribunals in recent decades. Despite, indeed because of, the relative scarcity of judicial settlement of disputes, international legal argumentation remains pervasive, but notably in a range of nonjudicial settings. States, corporations, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), and even guerrilla groups make claims in international legal terms in political bodies like the United Nations’ organs or domestic parliaments, private diplomatic discussions, and public statements in formal and informal settings.


Reproduced by permission of Oxford University Press