Mark R. Shulman

BA, Yale University. MSt, Oxford University. PhD, University of California–Berkeley. JD, Columbia University. Served as editor-in-chief of the Journal of Transnational Law at Columbia and received the Berger Prize for international law. Served as associate dean for global admissions at New York University and assistant dean for Graduate Programs & International Affairs at Pace Law School. Created and directed the Worldwide Security Program at the EastWest Institute and practiced law at Debevoise & Plimpton. A long-time leader of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York, he currently chairs the Committee on Asian Affairs and serves on the Council on International Affairs and the Task Force on National Security and the Rule of Law. He previously chaired the City Bar’s Committee on International Human Rights and the Council on International Affairs. He has taught the laws of war at Columbia Law School; military history at Yale, the Air War College, and Columbia (SIPA); and human rights at Sarah Lawrence and Hunter colleges. He has published widely in the fields of history, law, and international affairs. His books include The Laws of War: Constraints on Warfare in Western World (1994), Navalism and the Emergence of American Sea Power (1995), An Admiral’s Yarn (1999), and The Imperial Presidency and the Consequences of 9/11 (2007). His articles have appeared in the Columbia Journal of Transnational LawJournal of National Security & PolicyFordham Law Review, Journal of Military History, Intelligence and National Security, and The New York Times, among others. SLC, 2009–

Undergraduate Courses 2020-2021


International Law

Open , Lecture—Fall

In a global landscape pocked by genocide, wars of choice, piracy, and international terrorism, what good is international law? Can it mean anything without a global police force and a universal judiciary? Is “might makes right” the only law that works? Or is it true that “most states comply with most of their obligations most of the time”? These essential questions frame the contemporary practice of law across borders. This lecture provides an overview of international law—its doctrine, theory, and practice. The course addresses a wide range of issues, including the bases and norms of international law, the law of war, human-rights claims, domestic implementation of international norms, treaty interpretation, and state formation/succession.


Human Rights

Open , Lecture—Spring

History is replete with rabid pogroms, merciless religious wars, tragic show trials, and even genocide. For as long as people have congregated, they have defined themselves, in part, as against an other—and have persecuted that other. But history has also yielded systems of constraints. So how can we hope to achieve a meaningful understanding of the human experience without examining both the wrongs and the rights? Should the human story be left to so-called realists, who claim that power wins out over ideals every time? Or is there a logic of mutual respect that offers better solutions? This lecture examines the history of international human rights and focuses on the claims that individuals and groups make against states in which they live.