Lunch seminar with Brad Roth

Just Outcomes, Overreaching Rationales:  How International Criminal Law's Achievements Augur Flawed Responses to Political Violence

Although hard cases do not necessarily make bad law, extreme cases generate bad dicta.  The rhetoric of international criminal law tends to be addressed to morally unambiguous conflicts, where one side used atrocious means in the service of a manifestly evil end.  Yet political violence is a far more complex phenomenon than such rhetoric suggests, and calls for a broad range of nuanced responses.  As slogans such as "an end to impunity" and "no safe havens" become prevalent in the rhetoric of international law advocates, accommodation and restraint become cast as vices rather than virtues, to the detriment of the international legal order's most practicable mission: peaceful cooperation among actors who cannot be expected to agree about justice.  Paradoxically, instead of contributing to its presumed mission of furthering accountability in the exercise of power, international criminal law may end up furnishing a rationale to disparage and to flout norms designed to hold powerful states accountable.

Registration: For participation in the event, please use this registration form no later than 24 May, 11:00.

You are welcome to bring your own lunch bag.