Justice Discourses in Transition

Colm Campbell, Christine Bell, Fionnuala Ni Aolain

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

70 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This article asserts that ‘transitional justice’ analyses provide important tools in understanding how societies emerge from violent politics. It argues for a conception of transitional justice that goes beyond the question of dealing with the legacy of past human rights violations; rather, its focus is on a range of inter-related dilemmas relating to the role of law in transitional societies. Specifically, the article explores the pivotal and paradoxical role played by law and legal process in times of transition. It examines the tensions inherent in simultaneously reforming the law while utilizing legal form to bring about institutional transformation. These broad theoretical issues are addressed using Northern Ireland as a case study. The role of law is examined (and a reassessment of transition offered), through an exploration of five inter-linked areas: The relationship between law and conflict; the transformation of legal institutions; dealing with the past; political accommodation and minority rights; and the gap which occurs around gender and political transition. The article concludes by suggesting that only through a broader understanding of transitional justice, coupled with a nuanced reassertion of law’s domestic and international legitimacy, can the role of law in transitional societies be adequately understood.
LanguageEnglish
Pages305-328
JournalSocial Legal Studies
Volume13
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2004

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justice
Law
discourse
transitional society
legal form
minority rights
legal process
human rights violation
accommodation
legitimacy
politics
gender
society

Keywords

  • Transitional justice

Cite this

Campbell, C., Bell, C., & Ni Aolain, F. (2004). Justice Discourses in Transition. Social Legal Studies, 13(3), 305-328. https://doi.org/10.1177/0964663904044997
Campbell, Colm ; Bell, Christine ; Ni Aolain, Fionnuala. / Justice Discourses in Transition. In: Social Legal Studies. 2004 ; Vol. 13, No. 3. pp. 305-328.
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Campbell, C, Bell, C & Ni Aolain, F 2004, 'Justice Discourses in Transition', Social Legal Studies, vol. 13, no. 3, pp. 305-328. https://doi.org/10.1177/0964663904044997

Justice Discourses in Transition. / Campbell, Colm; Bell, Christine; Ni Aolain, Fionnuala.

In: Social Legal Studies, Vol. 13, No. 3, 09.2004, p. 305-328.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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