David Roth-Isigkeit, Goethe University Frankfurt, Cluster of Excellence Normative Orders, is publishing Niccoló Machiavelli's International Legal Thought – Culture, Contingency and Construction in System, Order, and International Law: The Early History of International Legal Thought (Stefan Kadelbach, Thomas Kleinlein, and David Roth-Isigkeit, eds., Oxford University Press, 2017). Here is the abstract.
This essay suggests a progressive reading of Machiavelli, relying on the unity of his national and international thought. It argues that his focus on the unification of political communities through the medium of law allows for a sophisticated theoretical understanding of international law. The essay starts with a discussion of the relationship of his biographical events and his social epistemology. It proceeds with the relationship of Machiavelli's concept of law as a governance tool to the area of morality and normativity. Ultimately, the focus lies on his understanding of imperialism and international relations in order to shape a novel understanding of Machiavelli that depicts him as a reasonable historical starting point for a modern, post-critical understanding of international law.Download the essay from SSRN at the link.