|Transitional Justice and the Arab Spring, eds. Kirsten Fisher and Robert Stewart (Routledge, 2013).
Summary: This book presents a varied and critical picture of how the Arab Spring demands a re-examination and re-conceptualization of issues of transitional justice. It demonstrates how unique features of this wave of revolutions and popular protests that have swept the Arab world since December 2010 give rise to distinctive concerns and problems relative to transitional justice, and explores how these issues in turn add fresh perspective and nuance to the field more generally. In so doing, it explores fundamental questions of social justice, reconstruction and healing in the context of the Arab Spring. Including the perspectives of academics and practitioners, Transitional Justice and the Arab Spring will be of considerable interest to those working on the politics of the Middle East, normative political theory, transitional justice, international law, international relations and human rights.
|The Politics of Violence, Truth and Reconciliation in the Arab Middle East, eds. Sune Haugbolle and Anders Hastrup (Routledge, 2009).
Summary: This book features studies of six Arab countries in which legacies of political violence have been challenged through various initiatives to promote “truth-telling” and transitional justice. The analysis departs from a liberal, teleological understanding of truth and reconciliation as a linear process from trauma through memory to national healing. Instead, the articles highlight how the interplay between state-orchestrated initiatives (such as Truth and Reconciliation committees and ministerial committees); civil society actors (including former political prisoners, investigative journalists and NGOs); and external actors (such as transnational NGOs, state sponsored dialogue initiatives, the UN and the EU) is creating a new political field. The book examines the extent to which this field challenges the Arab nation-state’s monopoly on history and violence, and asks whether public narratives of violence, memory and justice consolidate or challenge political legitimacy of current regimes.
|Memory And Violence in the Middle East And North Africa, eds. Ussama Makdisi and Paul A. Silverstein (Indiana University Press, 2006).
Summary: This interdisciplinary collection explores the connections between memories of past violence and the violence of present memories, the context for all contemporary efforts at conflict resolution and reconciliation. The contributors examine the 1954–1962 Franco-Algerian war, the 1975–1991 Lebanese civil war, and the ongoing Arab-Israeli conflict as interconnected struggles that outline national polities, infranational fractures, and transnational political connections. Insofar as national unity has been constructed on the contested claims of sacrifice and martyrdom, the legacy of violence has remained inscribed at the heart of political identity. The case studies point to the failure of current attempts to officially forget past conflicts, at the same time indicating local successes in commemorative actions that forge at least partial peaces between individuals and groups.