Grotius, Informal Empire and the Conclusion of Unequal Treaties

Grotius, Informal Empire and the Conclusion of Unequal Treaties Unequal treaties have become synonymous with the imperial practice of Western states in East Asia during the nineteenth century. They have also become a popular subject of study for historians of international law. A neglected feature of the history of unequal treaties is the way they were used and theorised upon as instruments of informal empire before the nineteenth century, in the early-modern age. Hugo Grotius in particular wrote extensively on unequal treaties and alliances through his familiarity with the Dutch East India Company’s exploits in the East Indies, where the conclusion of treaties with indigenous rulers formed the cornerstone of Dutch imperialism. This article delves into the early-modern roots of unequal alliances and discusses how the Grotian analysis of unequal alliances influenced other authors of the classic law of nations. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Grotiana Brill

Grotius, Informal Empire and the Conclusion of Unequal Treaties

Grotiana, Volume 37 (1): 18 – Jan 1, 1

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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
Copyright © Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
Subject
Articles
ISSN
0167-3831
eISSN
1876-0759
DOI
10.1163/18760759-03700003
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Unequal treaties have become synonymous with the imperial practice of Western states in East Asia during the nineteenth century. They have also become a popular subject of study for historians of international law. A neglected feature of the history of unequal treaties is the way they were used and theorised upon as instruments of informal empire before the nineteenth century, in the early-modern age. Hugo Grotius in particular wrote extensively on unequal treaties and alliances through his familiarity with the Dutch East India Company’s exploits in the East Indies, where the conclusion of treaties with indigenous rulers formed the cornerstone of Dutch imperialism. This article delves into the early-modern roots of unequal alliances and discusses how the Grotian analysis of unequal alliances influenced other authors of the classic law of nations.

Journal

GrotianaBrill

Published: Jan 1, 1

Keywords: unequal treaties; Grotius; informal empire; voc ; protection; international law

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