Stone Law: Jus Cogens in the context of Law and Literature

In NK Jemisin’s Broken Earth Trilogy, the core laws of the Stillness are written on stone. In tablet and verse, stone law sets out how that planet deals with the global crises that it repeatedly faces. But the tablets are incomplete, open to interpretation and their full intent and authorship uncertain. Nonetheless stone law forms the basis of the whole governance system. Ultimately, the narrative reveals that the stone laws are both more recent in origin but also an instrument of subjugation that and ‘common sense’. This subjugation includes peoples and the environment whose violent shaking creates the ‘broken’ nature of the world. Jus Cogens follow a long tradition of worldbuilding laws that are depicted as inevitable, absolute, unyielding and perpetual. Law and humanities is a well-established methodology and one increasingly successfully applied to international law.