The Justice Facade

Trials of Transition in Cambodia

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Alexander Hinton
  • Oxford, England: 
    Oxford University Press
    , May
     320 pages.
     For other formats: Link to Publisher's Website.


Is there a point to international justice?

Many contend that tribunals deliver not only justice but truth, reconciliation, peace, democratization, and the rule of law. These are the transitional justice ideals frequently invoked in relation to the international hybrid tribunal in Cambodia that is trying senior leaders of the Khmer Rouge regime for genocide and crimes against humanity committed during the mid-to-late 1970s.

In this ground-breaking book, Alexander Hinton argues these claims are a facade masking what is most critical: the ways in which transitional justice is translated, experienced, and understood in everyday life. Rather than reading the Khmer Rouge Tribunal in the language of global justice and human rights, survivors understand the proceedings in their own terms, including Buddhist beliefs and on-going relationships with the spirits of the dead.

About the Author(s)/Editor(s)/Translator(s): 

Alexander Hinton is Founder and Director of the Center for the Study of Genocide and Human Rights, Professor of Anthropology, and UNESCO Chair on Genocide Prevention at Rutgers University.


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