Twailing the Bakassi Case: Colonial Logic, Self-Determination, and the Future of International Law

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Working Paper

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The proposed paper will examine the deep structure, appropriateness and soundness of the reasoning and outcome in the Bakassi Case decided a few years ago by the International Court of Justice (ICJ). The proposed paper will examine the extent to which the decision reproduces the colonial logic and discourse which, as Anghie has convincingly demonstrated, lies at the historical roots of international law and continues to help shape the development of international legal reasoning. It will thereafter situate the reasoning and outcome in the case within the logic and discourse of self-determination, and consider the tensions in that case between colonialist and "self-determination-based" logics. The paper will end with an examination of the implications of the case for the future of the long-standing struggle of almost all third world societies for greater control of their own affairs.

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