Law in Times of Crisis: Emergency Powers in Theory and Practice

Fionnuala Ni Aolain, Oren Gross

Research output: Book/ReportBookpeer-review

194 Citations (Scopus)


The terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, and the ensuing war on terror have focused attention on issues that have previously lurked in a dark corner at the edge of the legal universe. The book presents systematic and comprehensive attempt by legal scholars to conceptualize the theory of emergency powers, combining post-September 11 developments with more general theoretical, historical and comparative perspectives. The authors examine the interface between law and violent crises through history and across jurisdictions, bringing together insights gleaned from the Roman republic and Jewish law through to the initial responses to the July 2005 attacks in London. The book examines three unique models of emergency powers that are used to offer a novel conceptualization of emergency regimes, giving a coherent insight into law's interface with and regulation of crisis and a distinctive means to evaluate the legal options open to states for dealing with crises. Particular attention is given to the interface between international law and regulatory mechanisms and emergency powers, as a key element of the contemporary political response to violent crises.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherCambridge University Press
Number of pages516
ISBN (Print)0521541239
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 2006


  • Emergency powers
  • war
  • terrorism
  • human rights
  • humanitarian law
  • international law


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