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Chapter Summary

When researching international and foreign law, one must know two things: the type of law they are researching, and the sources of law. Therefore, it is important to define and understand some basic concepts related to types of law and sources at the outset of any research project. The types of law discussed in this chapter includes: national law, private international law, comparative law, public international law, transnational law, supranational law, and soft law. The chapter presents some fundamental terms and concepts used throughout this book and when researching international and foreign law generally. Legal materials are published in a variety of sources, some official and some unofficial. The chapter highlights some of the most common types of legal materials. These materials include books, documents, commercial databases, freely available Web sites, articles, and people. The chapter also lays out the sources of law for major legal systems and international law.

Keywords: comparative law; foreign law; national law; private international law; public international law; soft law; supranational law; transnational law



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