A close examination of international law on language policy reveals that the vision of linguistic justice implicit in international law is limited in key ways. While in some respects international law opens up the possibilities for greater justice in relation to language use, in other respects it constrains them. This chapter considers the implications of this finding for international law. In particular, it asks whether it is possible for international law to engage more productively with issues of language. Drawing on Pierre Bourdieu’s work on the nature of the legal field, it argues that it is possible to exploit points of difference within international law in order to open up space for a more comprehensive and inclusive vision of linguistic justice. In reaching this conclusion, the chapter also considers the usefulness of Bourdieu’s methodology for analysing international law.
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