ANR    CNRS
ANR Programme 2009-2012
(ANR-08-GOUV-064)
image of courtroom
JUST-INDIA
A Joint Programme on Justice and Governance in India and South Asia
(Hosted by Centre for Himalayan Studies)

Reconstruction, Reconciliation and Rule of Law in War and Post-War Countries

Reconstruction, Reconciliation and Rule of Law in War and Post-War Countries
Reconstruction, réconciliation et État de droit en situation de guerre ou d’après-guerre

Organized with "Laboratoire d'Ethnologie et de Sociologie Comparative (LESC)", in collaboration with ISP and "Social Justice" network

Friday, June 29, 2012, University Paris West Nanterre

Convened by Antonio De Lauri

In the last decades, the massive interventions of international organizations involved in post-war reconstruction projects have provoked a reconfiguration of civil societies and a multiplication of the interconnections of different models of justice. The so-called “vernacularization” of human rights is one of the by-products of such processes. Discussions on human rights, for instance, are generally associated with an evident paradox whereby, to be accepted, human rights have to be embedded in local cultural systems. At the same time, however, if they are to be recognized as part of a “system of human rights”, they must correspond to the founding concept of human rights as elaborated by the so called international community. Attention is generally focused on the work of organizations and activists, through whom local normative problems are restated in terms of human rights. However, the far-reaching circulation of international organizations and foreign-governmental institutions in war and post-war contexts has often produced the opposite effect: instead of breeding a “legal conscience” open to human rights, it has increased the incidence of human rights violations. Transformations within local structures, family institutions, and social groups (also implying a redefinition of individual and group identities) have often led to tensions and conflicts which harden customary mechanisms and make them more likely to exclude differences deemed to be interfering. Within this scenario the role played by judges, prosecutors and lawyers is crucial because, through their activities, external influences penetrate legal practices and the judiciary. On an ideological-symbolic level, the majority of legal-humanitarian interventions have been legitimized by evoking the principle of the rule of law. The underlying logic is that a global rule of law becomes valid for national administrations giving citizens the possibility of making recourse to it in order to have their rights upheld. State governments, in turn, are also subjected to these global rights. However, the global expansion of law as an endeavor is still precarious, and the system of the same rules for everyone is still anything but stable.

According to which criteria should these equal rules for everyone be established? What is at stake in many contexts is the relationship between processes of standardization of the legal systems and reformulation of customary practices and values. This issue has been so contentious that in areas like Afghanistan it has periodically sparked regional rebellions. Contemporary attempts to introduce state legal systems and internationalize the judiciary in post-war countries are part of (often contested) processes of state building directly interlinked with the postcolonial historical conjuncture.

Over the past decades anthropologists and other social scientists have devoted considerable research to understand the working of the so called informal systems of justice. But how do state justice interact with local normative systems? How do “civil societies” absorb allogenic models of justice as to re-adapt in local terms?

The workshop aims at developing an interdisciplinary reflection on important phenomena that characterize contemporary normative and political transformations in war and post-war countries.

Programme

10h00: Morning session

Discussant : Guillaume Mouralis (CNRS, ISP)
  • Antonio De Lauri (Bourse F. Braudel, LESC & ISP) : Introduction.

     

  • Laetitia Atlani (IRD, SE4S & LESC): Du développement à l’aide humanitaire et retour. Anthropologie d’une dynamique politique en Asie centrale post-soviétique.

    A partir d’une étude de cas qui démarre en 1991 avec la disparition de l’Union soviétique, et s’étend sur vingt ans, nous nous interrogerons sur les politiques de l’aide internationale en Asie centrale post-soviétique.

     

  • Marie Lecomte Tilouine (CNRS, Centre d’Études Himalayennes): Du droit hindou à la loi naturelle maoïste, du royaume à sa reconstruction en république fédérale : transformation des normes au Népal.

    Le Népal est le seul Etat a avoir utilisé un code civil et pénal hindou, où la loi diffère selon la caste et distingue les infractions selon les groupes d'appartenance des deux personnes impliquées, avec toutes les combinaisons possibles. Ce code de loi ne fut profondément réformé qu'en 1963, lorsqu'il devint illégal de traiter juridiquement une affaire relative à la caste, et que l'égalité de tous devant la loi fut instaurée. Mais le droit hindou continua à être appliqué de manière coutumière et ce jusqu'au développement du mouvement maoïste, à partir de 1996, qui fit du règlement des fautes l'un de ses chevaux de bataille. Là où la justice coutumière prolongeait les inégalités entre les castes et les sexes, et où la loi excluait le traitement de ces questions hors de son champ, la justice maoïste s'est attachée à les règler de manière forte, et selon un cadre normatif qui, suivant les termes utilisés par le parti, reposait sur la "loi naturelle". Enfin, avec la signature des accords de paix en 2006, de nombreux débats ont vu le jour, alliant pour la première fois des acteurs internationaux, notamment à propos des procédures de "Vérité et Réconciiation."

     

  • Sandrine Lefranc (CNRS, ISP) : Pacifier "par le bas". A quoi bon ?.

    Les politiques internationales de construction de la paix aujourd'hui mises en oeuvre dans les pays qui sortent d'un conflit interne violent privilégient, en complément des interventions visant les élites politiques et les institutions, la paix "par le bas" : écriture collective de l'histoire, lieux de coexistence entre membres des groupes belligérants, inculcation de techniques de résolution des conflits, etc. Cette communication tentera de comprendre, au-delà d'une évaluation de l'impact des programmes, ce que véhiculent ces politiques.

14h30 Afternoon session
Discussant : Yazid Ben Hounet (CNRS, LAS)
  • Antonio De Lauri (Bourses F. Braudel, LESC & ISP) : Militarism, Humanitarianism and Rule of Law. The Common Good in post-2001 Afghanistan.

    The paper will focus on the interconnections between humanitarianism, reconstruction and military intervention in post-2001 Afghanistan. At stake is a critical understanding of the political implication of rule of law projects and the idea of "common good" or "superior interest".

     

  • Jana Schildt (Université Catholique de Louvain): Opening the Black Box of Rwandan Reconciliation.

    Since the 1950's, Rwandas's society has been marked by the cyclical exile (and return) of an important share of its population. The aim of this communication is to analyse the possible meaning of "national unity and reconciliation" in a very particular post-genocide context where not only survivors and perpetrators but also different categories of former exiles live in intimate proximity.