When Harvard Law School first established a professorship for international law in 1898, the field itself scarcely existed. Since then, the school has continued to define and reshape international and comparative legal studies.
Scholars and practitioners trained at Harvard offered legal advice to the King of Siam in the early 1900s, helped negotiate treaties that ended World War I and provided critical guidance on the creation of the United Nations. Today, Harvard faculty members–and students–are producing cutting-edge work in fields as diverse as human rights, international financial systems and the prevention of global terrorism.
This 14-minute video tells the story of how a single gift by Harvard Law graduate George Bemis helped inspire a legacy of international legal scholars, and paved the way for Harvard to become a leader in what is now one of the most important and rapidly changing areas of law.