EAS1335H Violence, Justice, & the Human
Professor: Lisa Yoneyama
The course is designed for those interested in the theories of violence and justice but with particular emphases on the question of (un)redressability and its relationship to the universal human rights discourse.
We will read several key philosophical texts on violence and law that have gained significance in recent years as a result of the renewed sensibilities of the late-colonial contradictions. Additionally, we will read works that make attempts at theorizing the possibilities of bringing justice to specific historical violence. These include literatures on TRCs, war reparations, transitional justice, and colonial restitution, slavery redress, reports and analyses of the 2001 Third World Conference Against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance held in Durban, and documents related to other paralegal cases of restorative justice regarding colonial and other racialized-civilizational violences, including the 2000 adjudication of the Japanese military sex slavery. We will critically examine these texts by asking the following questions: What sets the discussions of colonial redress apart from the dominant discourse of transitional justice of post-conflict societies?; What are the broader intellectual implications of the intensifying quests for redress, reparation, and reconciliation when considered within the ever-expanding spaces of exception (e.g. prisons, refugee and migrant camps, ‘low-intensity’ conflict zones, etc.) and the failing juridico-political premises of modernity and how can we situate colonial redress in that context?; How has the discourse of universal human rights and other international regimes such as the human security paradigm and international feminist jurisprudence facilitated or hindered the colonial redress?; What are the earlier aborted moments of decolonization and how do they differ from the ones currently unfolding within the regime of global human rights discourse?
(2) Weekly Reading Responses on Blackboard 30%
(3) Leading Seminar Discussion 15%
(4) Sharing Final Paper Projects 10%
(5) Final paper 30%