Book ReviewIndigenous Rights and BiodiversitySymposium

Incorporating indigenous rights in the CBD

A theoretical model that should inform implementation

Let me start by thanking the symposium’s editors and the three researchers that have accepted to review my work for their thoughtful comments and for sparking a lively discussion. In my book, I argue for the harmonisation of a too often fragmented international legal system: Indigenous peoples’ rights and biodiversity law. The main purpose though is not only to ensure theoretical consistency, but also to suggest avenues for a mutually …

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Book ReviewIndigenous Rights and BiodiversitySymposium

Two opposing commitments?

Towards a synchronised protection of biodiversity and indigenous peoples’ rights

Federica Cittadino’s book examines the tension that underpins the relationship between two key commitments undertaken by the international community, namely the commitment to protect indigenous people’s rights and the commitment to protect biodiversity. This book becomes especially relevant at a time when we are frequently reminded of the difficulty of reconciling the two ensuing legal regimes. What, then, can be done to prevent governments’ actions, taken in the pursuit of …

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Book ReviewIndigenous Rights and BiodiversitySymposium

Indigenous power beyond human rights

Indigenous power in international law has long been subsumed under the language of international human rights, and we have turned ourselves blind to other possibilities in international law that Indigenous peoples can rely upon. One such option is international environmental law, which has seldom received sustained scholarly attention. In her new book, Federica Cittadino “argues that a correct interpretation / implementation of the international framework on the protection of biodiversity …

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Book ReviewIndigenous Rights and BiodiversitySymposium

Traditional knowledge and customary law

Recognizing indigenous peoples for environmental conservation

While the world’s 370 million of persons belonging to an Indigenous people account for less than five percent of the total human population, they hold tenure over 25 percent of the world’s land surface. These lands represent about 80 percent of the global biodiversity. This blog post critically reflects on the role of Indigenous peoples in the conservation of the environment, considering the legal analysis of the biodiversity conservation regime …

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Book ReviewIndigenous Rights and BiodiversitySymposium

Incorporating indigenous rights in the international regime on biodiversity protection

Introducing the book symposium on Federica Cittadino’s book on access, benefit-sharing and conservation in indigenous lands

This post is the first of a series of four that will discuss Federica Cittadino’s book Incorporating Indigenous Rights in the International Regime on Biodiversity Protection. Access, Benefit-sharing and Conservation in Indigenous Lands (Brill, 2019). The book starts from the assumption that Indigenous peoples are not only considered as stewards of the environment in international law but may become victims of the international protection of biodiversity. Cittadino argues that this …

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BofaxeCurrent Developments

Germany’s commitment to international justice

On the groundbreaking first trial addressing genocide against Yazidis

Part I Six years after the so-called “Islamic State in Iraq and Syria” (ISIS) began persecuting and annihilating the Yazidis, an ethno-religious minority group in Northern Iraq, the first trial of its kind addressing genocide against the group commenced in Frankfurt am Main on April 24, 2020. While the world is focusing its efforts to contain the COVID-19 pandemic, the Frankfurt judges are avidly going forward with the case against …

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Current Developments

A crisis (not) averted

How the government-imposed lockdown led to a mass exodus of migrant workers in India

The COVID-19 led humanitarian crisis in India has resulted in, what journalist P. Sainath calls, ‘the discovery of its migrant workforce’. The number of internal migrants in India is estimated to be 139 million (Census 2011) with an annual average movement of 9 million people recorded between the states during the period of 2011 to 2016 (Economic Survey of India 2017). In what is known as one of the most …

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Book ReviewSymposiumThe Corporation, Law and Capitalism

Perfect pandemic reading

I am very excited about my book being discussed in the Völkerrechtsblog and grateful to Michael Bader for organising it, and for the six readers taking their time to dip into my 500-page tome. I hope I can do some justice to the reviews in these few words, and for the questions or comments not addressed, I hope the opportunity arises for a face to face discussion, over a beer …

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Book ReviewSymposiumThe Corporation, Law and Capitalism

Between utopia and affirmation of the status quo

For someone who has been working in the field of so-called strategic litigation against multinational corporations in international (criminal) law and other fields of national law for more than a decade, it is obvious that law often enough benefits the interests of the economically and politically powerful. Still, legal interventions can very well serve as a tool of resistance for communities affected by corporate abuse. Beyond resistance, there is a …

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Book ReviewSymposiumThe Corporation, Law and Capitalism

Internationales Recht und kapitalistische Verwertungslogik

Zur politischen Ökonomie der Unternehmensverantwortung

The Corporation, Law and Capitalism: A Radical Perspective on the Role of Law in the Global Political Economy ist ein lautes Buch. Die Autor*in verspricht, auf “radikale” Weise unseren Blick auf das Verhältnis von Wirtschaft, Unternehmen und der Entwicklung des Internationalen Rechts zu verändern; neue Kritik vorzutragen, die sich unter anderem auf bisher ungesichtetes Archivmaterial stützt. Vielleicht bedarf es einer derartigen Ansage, um im ohrenbetäubenden Rauschen des “Corporate Accountability” und …

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Book ReviewSymposiumThe Corporation, Law and Capitalism

International law and capitalist logic of exploitation

On the political economy of corporate responsibility

The Corporation, Law and Capitalism: A Radical Perspective on the Role of Law in the Global Political Economy is a loud book. The author promises to “radically” change our view of the relationship between the economy, business, and the development of international law; to present new critique based, among other things, on previously unseen archive material. Perhaps such an announcement is needed to be heard in the deafening noise of …

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Book ReviewSymposiumThe Corporation, Law and Capitalism

Of law(s) and capitalism(s)

The thrive for corporate accountability has given rise to some of the most vivid legal developments since the post-war era. In a liberal logic and from the vantage point of the rule of law, these have generally been championed. Pioneering cases against industrialists in the Nuremberg war criminal trials, a surge of civil liability claims brought against lead firms in the Global North, the recent openness of the European Commission …

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Book ReviewSymposiumThe Corporation, Law and Capitalism

Legal form(s) beyond capitalism?

The Corporation, Law and Capitalism is an important book. With a historical-materialist focus on the legal configuration of the corporation as a legal entity, Grietje Baars shows in an exemplary way the role of law in the shaping of capitalism. As their starting point, Baars refers to a historical materialism based on the authors Pashukanis and Miéville. Accordingly, Baars assumes that property is the raison d’etre of law (p. 19). …

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Book ReviewSymposiumThe Corporation, Law and Capitalism

Rechtsform(en) jenseits des Kapitalismus?

The Corporation, Law and Capitalism ist ein wichtiges Buch. Mit einem historisch-materialistischen Fokus auf die rechtliche Konfigurierung des Unternehmens als Rechtsperson zeigt Grietje Baars exemplarisch die Rolle des Rechts für die Ausgestaltung des Kapitalismus. In ihrem Ausgangspunkt bezieht sich Baars dabei auf einen historischen Materialismus gestützt auf die Autoren Pashukanis und Miéville. Dementsprechend geht Baars davon aus, dass das Eigentum raison d’etre des Rechts sei (S. 19). Eigentum sei als …

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Book ReviewSymposiumThe Corporation, Law and Capitalism

Seeking corporate accountability for human rights

Concealment and congealment in international law

The Corporation, Law and Capitalism provided a fantastically refreshing (if a little depressing) counter-narrative of international (criminal) law’s intimate relationship with capital, and the paradoxical effect this has on attempts to hold corporations accountable for their actions. In the field of business and human rights (BHR), we try to utilise law (in its various forms) as a tool to ensure justice for rightsholders who have been negatively affected by corporate …

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Book ReviewSymposiumThe Corporation, Law and Capitalism

Working toward the world we want to live in

Introducing the book symposium on Grietje Baars’ “The Corporation, Law and Capitalism: A Radical Perspective on the Role of Law in the Global Political Economy”

Grietje Baars’ recently published book The Corporation, Law and Capitalism is a powerful intervention on multiple accounts. Baars’ study spearheads and complements a newly revived Marxist legal tradition in the footsteps of Soviet legal theorist Evgeny Pashukanis, whose work on “The General Theory of Law and Marxism” (1924) pioneered the commodity-form theory of law. Pashukanis’ main argument is that the commodity form and the legal form follow the same logic, …

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