Transitional Justice: Images and Memories. Edited by Chrisje Brants. Antoine Hol and Dina Siegel. Farnham: Ashgate, 2013. 284 pp. 68.00 cloth.

Date01 December 2015
Published date01 December 2015
full speech? Is not entry into its imperfect language of claiming,
each time, a terrifying pleasure?
Transitional Justice: Images and Memories. Edited by Chrisje Brants.
Antoine Hol and Dina Siegel. Farnham: Ashgate, 2013. 284 pp.
£68.00 cloth.
Reviewed by Angi Buettner, Media Studies Program, Victoria
University of Wellington, New Zealand
Kofi Annan, chair of the Elders group of former world leaders and
former UN secretary general, was cited recently to the effect that
“climate change would leave the living envying the dead” (Vidal
2015); Annan is echoing a phrase by Nikita Khrushchev talking
about nuclear war in 1979. The point he is making is that political
and environmental turmoil caused by droughts, floods, and the
many other effects of rising temperatures will crucially transform
our social life and times. Transitional Justice makes a contribution to
the discussion of this issue, within the more general context of con-
sidering criminology as social theory tasked with analyzing a con-
temporary world marked by global political, economic, and
environmental turmoil.
The book is an edited collection in Ashgate’s series “Advances in
Criminology.” It makes a timely, well-organized, and thematically
coherent contribution to the field in two ways: via its discussion of
transitional justice and via its overarching theme of the role of crimi-
nology. Its particular strength lies in its multidisciplinary and inter-
national approach: its 13 chapters provide critiques of the various
dimensions of transitional justice by criminal lawyers, cultural
anthropologists, criminologists, political scientists, and historians.
Transitional justice is concerned with the judicial, political, and cul-
tural procedures of dealing with mass atrocity, or “the reckoning
afterwards” (p. 2), as the editors articulateit. Such procedures range
from international trials to grassroots memory initiatives, and this
collection offers a detailed map of the discursive field of transitional
justice. Each chapter is a case study of different procedures and
landscapes of transitional justice, such as the role of political apology
(Chapter Seven) and the emotional landscape of the India/Pakistan
partition (Chapter 13). Although all these case studies differ in their
disciplinary approach, rigorous research and clear editing results in
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