MTA Law Working Papers

A Jogtudományi Intézet műhelytanulmányai

Tamás Hoffmann: The Concept of the Standard of Civilization in International Law

Article 38 (1) (a) of the Statute of the International Court of Justice lists as one of the sources applied by the Court ‘the general principles of law recognized by civilized nations’. This obscure reference to the standard of civilization today serves no more purpose, however, until the first half of the 20th century it functioned as one of the structural principles of international law. This short article aims at introducing the concept and its effects on international relations and its disappearance from the normative framework of international law.