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Hugo Grotius and International Relations$
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Hedley Bull, Benedict Kingsbury, and Adam Roberts

Print publication date: 1992

Print ISBN-13: 9780198277712

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0198277717.001.0001

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The Importance of Grotius in the Study of International Relations

The Importance of Grotius in the Study of International Relations

(p.65) 2 The Importance of Grotius in the Study of International Relations
Hugo Grotius and International Relations

Hedley Bull

Oxford University Press

The work of Grotius is one of the great landmarks in modern thinking about international relations, and has lost none of its importance. Grotius, a major intellectual figure of Europe, was a leading exponent of the concept of international society—that states form a society or community with one another. He partially set the intellectual framework for the Peace of Westphalia, which was concluded in 1648, three years after his death. His view of international society placed emphasis on natural law, universality of international society, the importance of individuals as well as states, and solidarism in the enforcement of rules.

Keywords:   international society, natural law, Peace of Westphalia, solidarism, universality of international society

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