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International Criminal Tribunals as Actors of Domestic Change

The Impact on Media Coverage, Volume 1


Edited By Klaus Bachmann, Irena Ristić and Gerhard Kemp

Do International Criminal Tribunals trigger social change, provide reconciliation, stabilize fragile post-conflict societies? Many authors claim they do, but they base their assumptions mainly on theoretical considerations and opinion polls. The editors and authors of this book take a different position: based on extensive field research in nine European and African countries, they examine whether tribunal decisions resulted in changes in media frames about the conflicts which gave rise to the creation of these tribunals. International Tribunals hardly ever shape or change the grand narratives about wars and other conflicts, but they often manage to trigger small changes in media frames which, in some cases, even lead to public reflexion about guilt and responsibility and more awareness for (the respective enemy’s) victims. On an empirical basis, this book shows the potential of International Criminal Justice, the possibilities, but also the limits of International Criminal Tribunals. Volume 1 presents the evidence from Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro, Kosovo, Serbia and Croatia.

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The editors and authors


Klaus Bachmann is professor of social sciences at the SWPS University of Social Sciences and Humanities in Warsaw, Poland. He also worked at the University of Vienna, Bordeaux, Renmin (Being), Johns Hopkins (USA) and Stellenbosch (South Africa). He specializes in Transitional Justice and is the author of Genocidal Empires. German Colonialism in Africa and the Third Reich, Frankfurt/M.: Peter Lang 2018.

Gerhard Kemp is professor of law at Stellenbosch University, and advocate of the High Court of South Africa. He serves on the board of directors of the Institute for Justice and Reconciliation (IJR) in Cape Town, is a former senior research fellow at the Robert Bosch Academy, and holds an Alexander von Humboldt Research Fellowship. He specializes in international criminal law and is the author of Individual Criminal Liability for the International Crime of Aggression, Cambridge: Intersentia 2nd ed. 2016.

Irena Ristić is a researcher at the Institute of Social Sciences in Belgrade. As a historian her research focus lies within the dynamics of the state- and nation-building process in both 19th-century Serbia and the post-Yugoslav states, with a special interest for the origins of anti-west/anti-EU sentiments. She had longer visiting stays in Vienna (IWM), Regensburg (IOS), and Florence (EUI). Her book on the position of Serbian political elites towards the West and Russia respectively prior to World War I is forthcoming.

Vjollca Krasniqi is a sociologist. She teaches at the Faculty of Philosophy, University of Prishtina. She holds a PhD...

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