Social constructivists are taking seriously the proposition that argumentation matters to world politics, and these theorists are doing empirical work to demonstrate its impact. This chapter links this strand of international relations theory to the work of deliberative democrats, who see the possibility of reasoned exchange beyond the level of the nation-state. It then turns to legal argumentation as a distinctive and uniquely powerful form of deliberation in international affairs. The chapter concludes with the claim that legal argumentation and democratic deliberation are a measure of the legitimacy of decision making in international organizations (IOs).
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