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Hastings International and Comparative Law Review

Abstract

In 2006 the American Society of International Law celebrated its centennial anniversary. In 2007 it is the turn of the Society's flagship publication, the American Journal of International Law, to celebrate its centennial volume. This first-of-its-kind detailed survey dissects the Journal's "international" attribute: how truly "international" and how "American" has this prestigious publication proved in the course of a century? How accommodating a host has it been to international lawyers with no U.S. affiliation or with 'deviating' views on international law? The research has been multi-fold; we examine the content, the structure and the thematology of the Journal, measuring foreign membership on the editorial board, non-U.S. academic affiliation of individual contributors, and the thematic patterns of the published materials. We document traces of an internationalist trend during the Society's first years and in the post-War volumes of the Journal, in unsurprising harmony with the prevalent themes of the US foreign policy of the time. However, we find that, significantly, the overall percentage of contributions from non-'anglophone' authors has remained relatively low, despite signs of an encouraging increase in recent years. We then weigh our findings against the Founders' vision of the Journal as a vibrant global academic forum. Even though categorical assertions are avoided, we conclude by suggesting that the Journal intensify the effort to expand its reach to the citizens of the world and become more inclusive of foreign legal scholarship.

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