Utopia and the Doubters: truth, transition and the law

Colm Campbell, Catherine Turner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Citations (Scopus)


Truth commissions have an intuitive appeal in squaring the circle of peace and accountability post-conflict, but some claims for their benefits risk utopianism. Law provides both opportunities and pitfalls for post-conflict justice initiatives, including the operation of truth commissions. Rather than adopting a heavily legalised approach, derived from public inquiries, a "holistic legal model", employing social science fact finding methodologies to explore patterns of violations, and drawing appropriately on legal standards, may provide the best option for a possible Northern Ireland truth commission.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)374-395
JournalLegal Studies
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - Sept 2008


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