Talking Transitions: How Narratives Shape, Move and Defy Notions of Justice

Conference Panel

Criminal justice interventions in the aftermath of conflict do more than holding perpetrators to account. They also set the parameters of what is considered a crime, who is considered a perpetrator, what accountability can be sought for, and by whom. As such, they shape the very notion of justice, and determine the boundaries of the judicial imagination (Stonebridge 2011).

However, courts are not the only actors – implicitly or explicitly – shaping these boundaries. Legal norms are also shaped by extralegal actors hovering in the orbits and shadows of these – national, hybrid or international –courts, such as victim support units, NGOs, grassroots activists, legal practitioners, etc.

Moreover, these various actors do not operate in a vacuum, but are in themselves shaped by the – institutional, geographical and other – contexts in which they operate, and, more importantly, they often travel within and between these various epistemological realms that are each characterized by their own justice notions. How do these various justice narratives meet, where and how do they interact, what comes out of these interactions, and (how) do interactions and alterations that happen in one realm shape those happening in another realm. More specifically, (how) do narrative transformations happening in the so-called periphery feed back into more mainstream understandings of justice?

The panel brings together papers that address these questions from various disciplinary, geographical and institutional angles, to arrive at a richer understanding of how notions about justice travel, translate and transform across space and time.


Date & Time

August 27, 2020

13:00 - 15:00


Organized by European Consortium for Political Science