Supremacy of the State in International Law

The Act of State Doctrine holds that a state is legally supreme within its own boundaries and its sovereign is wholly immune to the judgments of other nations. The acts that the sovereign power’s agents perform as part of their official duties and responsibilities cannot be called into question in the courts of another nation. If a state possesses not final and complete power over its own territory and citizens it is a dependency, a colony, or an occupied area. As nations moved into the modern world nations began to have second thoughts about maintaining and supporting sovereign absolutism. This study investigates past, current, and emerging meanings of the act of state doctrine. It also examines exceptions to the act of state doctrine.

Table of Contents

Act of State Defined
The Act of State in English Law
Early American Cases
The Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act
The Alien Tort Claims Act
Genocide and War Crimes
Presidential Control of Foreign Relations
Expropriation of Property
Bibliography; Index