Introduction: Definition of Terms

Public International Law

Private International Law

Foreign Law and Comparative Law

Foreign Law

Foreign law, or national law, defines the role of governments to the people they govern and controls relationships between people. It may regulate foreign persons and entities, but it does not have effect outside the boundaries of a nation.

Comparative Law

Comparative law is "the study of the similarities and differences between the laws of two or more countries, or between two or more legal systems. Comparative law is not itself a system of law or a body of rules, but rather a method or approach to legal inquiry." (Berring, How to Find the Law, 9th ed., p 565).

Research Tip
For more information about foreign legal systems and comparative law, see e.g. Mary Ann Glendon, et al. Comparative Legal Traditions, 2nd ed. For more assistance with researching foreign law, see the foreign and comparative law research guides listed in the Essential Sources section of this tutorial.

Next Section - Introduction to International Law

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