Seminar: Professor Gerry Simpson, "War Crimes Trials, Solemnity and the Problem of Evil"

Past Event

02 March 2010, 1:00am

Institute for Ethics, Law and Armed Conflict
Department of Politics and International Relations, Manor Road, Oxford, OX1 3UQ

Professor Gerry Simpson, LSE / University of Melbourne

There is a gap between our intuitions about what justice can be or might become, and the sometimes tawdry circumstances of its institutional exercises. We might illustrate this gap by juxtaposing the claims surrounding the Iraqi High Tribunal and international criminal justice with the events around Saddam Hussein’s execution or the bathetic demise of Slobodan Milosevic in a Schreveningen prison. This lecture will consider international law’s encounter with evil; and, in, particular, the way in which this encounter has been defined both by the requirements of solemnity, legality and remembrance and by, what Thomas Hardy termed, “satires of circumstance”.