The international legal thought of Carl Schmitt : towards a critique of the contemporary international order
The international legal thought of Carl Schmitt : towards a critique of the contemporary international order" (2005). FIU Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 1396. The thesis of Alex D. Barder is approved. Interim Dean Mark Szuc C ege offAts an S 'e es Dean uglas Wartzok University Graduate School Florida International University, 2005 ii DEDICATION Je consacre ce travail a ma mere qui a toujours cru en moi. iii ACKNOWLEDGMENTS This thesis would not have been possible without the consistent
... t the consistent and kind support of my committee members. In particular, my major Professor Frangois Debrix, who read thoroughly all the chapters while providing invaluable comments and suggestions. I must especially thank him for his patience with my sometimes-linguistic inaccuracies. Also I must thank his generosity in encouraging me to present at various conferences and to work towards publishing. Likewise, the independent study that I was part of with Professor Debrix and my colleague Jason Weidner was invaluable in teaching me how to carefully read a text. Also, a special thanks to Professor Harry Gould who as well read through all the chapters while I was composing them and provided critical comments and support. Professor Gould was instrumental in helping me to understand the various nuances in international legal orders. Professor Mohiaddin Mesbahi's lectures and office hours discussing conceptual issues provided me with my initial interest in theory and for that I am eternally grateful. Professor Price taught me to better look at the concept of place and how it remains coupled to political theory. The seminars on Heidegger and Space, Place, & Identity were invaluable for opening my horizons. I must thank as well Professor Nicholas Onuf, whose seminars in theory and his initial reading of my conference paper on Carl Schmitt provided the motivation for probing deeper into international law and politics. I would also like to thank the International Relations department for providing a stellar environment for research and guidance. Special thanks to Mary Cossio and Martha Linares for their patience and help with administrative issues. On a more personal note, I would not be where I am were it not for my dear friend Majid Al-Khalili. Majid was instrumental in setting me on the path of academic iv scholarship and, more importantly, looking at the world in a totally new manner. This work could not have been accomplished without the constant encouragement of my wife and friend Alla Mirzoyan. Her patience and generosity in reading my work facilitated the moments when I felt I was at an impasse. I owe the success of this thesis to her. v ABSTRACT OF THE THESIS The aim of the thesis is to develop a critique of current liberal conceptualizations of international order. In order to conduct this critique, this thesis revisits the arguments first put forth by the German legal and political theorist Carl Schmitt. Schmitt conceptualizes a tripartite unity between law, order, and place. This unity, established at the constituent moment of land-appropriation, forms a concrete nomos, which subsequently creates the contours of the legal and political order. The establishment of the concrete order is necessarily the construction of a territorial boundary that designates an inside and an outside of the polity. By speaking of a nomos of the earth, Schmitt globalized this understanding of concrete order by looking at the various historical developments that created a "line" between the concrete applicability of interstate norms and a region where the exceptional situation prevails. The critique presented in this thesis is concerned with the lack of concrete boundary conditions within the current international legal order. It is argued that this lack of a well-defined boundary condition is what results in extreme forms of violence that were traditionally bracketed.