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34 N.Y.U. J. Int'l L. & Pol. 513 (2001-2002)
Colonialism and the Birth of International Institutions: Sovereignty, Economy, and the Mandate System of the League of Nations

handle is hein.journals/nyuilp34 and id is 523 raw text is: COLONIALISM AND THE BIRTH OF
All sovereign states are equal.1 Colonies, by definition,
lack sovereignty. But the transformation of colonial territories
* Professor of Law, S.J. Quinney School of Law, University of Utah.
This article is based on two chapters of my S.J.D. dissertation, Creating the
Nation State: Colonialism and the Making of International Law (1995) (un-
published S.J.D. dissertation, Harvard Law School) (on file with author). It
is part of a larger and ongoing project examining the relationship between
colonialism and international law. My thanks to my colleagues in the Third
World Approaches to International Law network of scholars; to James An-
derson and Scott Rosevear for research assistance; and to the Summer Sti-
pend Program of the Quinney School of Law at the University of Utah for
financial support. I am grateful especially to Thomas Franck for his detailed
comments on a draft of this work, and to David Kennedy for his support over
the years I have worked on this project. I am indebted to C.G. Weeramantry
in many respects, but in this particular case because my preoccupation with
the Mandate System of the League of Nations commenced many years ago
when I worked as his research assistant for the Nauru Commission of In-
quiry. Aspects of this paper were presented at the European Law Research
Center Conference on The Globalization of Modern Legal Thought:
1850-2000, to the Comparative Law and Politics Seminar at the University of
Tokyo, to the Kyushu Association of International Law, to the International
Law Society at the University of Hokkaido, and at the Faculty Seminar Series
at Osgoode Hall Law School, York University. My thanks to the participants,
at those events and, in particular, to Professors B.S. Chimni, Onuma Yasuaki,
Kazuhiro Nakatani, Teraya Koji, Lee Keun Gwan, Masaharu Yanagihara,
Temuro Komuri, Rober Wai, Kerry Rittich, and Obiora Okafor.
1. This proposition, which is fundamental to international law, has been
formulated in different ways. Oppenheim's formulation in 1928 is as fol-
lows: The equality before International Law of all member-states of the
Family of Nations is an invariable quality derived from their International
Personality. 1 OPPENHEIM, INTERNATIONAL LAw (Sir Arnold D. McNair ed.,
4th ed. 1928). The suggestion that equality exists, not among all states, but
rather, among those states that are members of the Family of Nations (that
is, European and Western states) points already to one of the major themes
explored in this article: the complex relationship between sovereign equal-
ity and colonialism, and the manner in which admission to the Family of

Imaged with the Permission of N.Y.U Journal of International Law and Politics

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