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Courts in ConflictInterpreting the Layers of Justice in Post-Genocide Rwanda$
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Nicola Palmer

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780199398195

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199398195.001.0001

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Legitimating Transitional Justice in Rwanda

Legitimating Transitional Justice in Rwanda

(p.157) 5 Legitimating Transitional Justice in Rwanda
Courts in Conflict

Nicola Palmer

Oxford University Press

Chapter 5 explores why distinct legal cultures have emerged inside the ICTR, the national courts, and gacaca, examining to what extent the objectives of the courts have matched the interests of the citizens over whom they have exercised authority. The nature of the transitional period means that the social structures being studied are undergoing substantial change. This change demands that a primary task of the research is the exploration—and sometimes discovery—of emerging structures that help explain the relevant social behavior. Chapter 5 argues that the distinct meanings ascribed to the work of the courts can usefully be explained as a process of legitimation. David Beetham’s theory of legitimacy aids the examination of this social data, highlighting where and how the legitimacy of the three courts has been pursued and eroded.

Keywords:   legal culture, legitimacy, transitional justice, transitional period, David Beetham

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