LL4A8 Half Unit
International Law and the Use of Force
This information is for the 2021/22 session.
Dr Devika Hovell
This course is available on the LLM (extended part-time), LLM (full-time), MSc in Conflict Studies, MSc in Gender, Peace and Security, MSc in Human Rights and University of Pennsylvania Law School LLM Visiting Students. This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.
This course has a limited number of places and we cannot guarantee all students will get a place.
Some prior knowledge of international law is useful but not essential.
This half unit course examines the law relating to when it is permissible to use force (jus ad bellum). The aim of this course is to develop an understanding of the principles of international law that regulate the use of force in international society. It concentrates on the prohibition of resort to force in Article 2(4) of the United Nations Charter and the exceptions to that prohibition, examining in detail the various elements and controversies impacting on the right to self-defence and Security Council authorisation. We also examine ‘creeping’ exceptions to the prohibition on the use of force, including humanitarian intervention, pro-democratic intervention and the protection of nationals. The criminalisation of aggression is also considered.
This course will have two hours of teaching content each week in Michaelmas Term, either in the form of a two hour seminar or an online lecture and one hour class. There will be a Reading Week in Week 6 of Michaelmas Term.
One 2,000 word essay.
A detailed reading list will be issued on Moodle. For a comprehensive textbook, see Chrstine Gray, International Law and the Use of Force (4th ed., 2018).
Exam (100%, duration: 2 hours, reading time: 15 minutes) in the summer exam period.
Course selection videos
Some departments have produced short videos to introduce their courses. Please refer to the course selection videos index page for further information.
Important information in response to COVID-19
Please note that during 2021/22 academic year some variation to teaching and learning activities may be required to respond to changes in public health advice and/or to account for the differing needs of students in attendance on campus and those who might be studying online. For example, this may involve changes to the mode of teaching delivery and/or the format or weighting of assessments. Changes will only be made if required and students will be notified about any changes to teaching or assessment plans at the earliest opportunity.
Total students 2020/21: 38
Average class size 2020/21: 18
Controlled access 2020/21: Yes
Value: Half Unit
Personal development skills
- Specialist skills