Vademecum of International law, as the label of this textbook indicates, is
a brief handbook of public international law. The objective of this textbook
is to provide its readers with a coherent introduction into the study of public
international law. This textbook therefore explains the main concepts and
institutions of public international law. In doing so, where appropriate, the text
takes into consideration historic origins and development of the respective
institutions of public international law, as well as the historic development of
public international law as a whole.
This textbook also deliberately includes extensive quotations of both
primary texts (such as court decisions or texts of international treaties) as well
as thoughts of influential writers in the respective fields of public international
law. The resort to extensive quotations should provide the reader with first
hand resources without the (always subjective) deformation of the respective
source via paraphrasing.
This textbook is not intended to serve as an all-encompassing textbook
or encyclopedia. After all, for that it would be too short in the first place.
The objective here is to provide the reader with a basic introduction into
the key areas of public international law, foundations upon which one
can built further study. The reason is that this book is primarily intended
as a main textbook for a one semester course called Introduction to Public
International Law taught at the University of West Bohemia in Pilsen and
frequented primarily by Erasmus exchange students for whom English is in
most cases a foreign language. In doing so, this textbook leaves out certain
areas of public international law that ought to be read elsewhere, inter alia:
material maritime law, international criminal law, space law, aviation law,
international environmental law, and human rights law. Other areas are
discussed in volume and depth appropriate to a one semester course in
a qualifying law degree program.