Ethnojustice: The Turn to Culture

Adam Branch

in Displacing Human Rights

Published in print August 2011 | ISBN: 9780199782086
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199919130 | DOI:
Ethnojustice: The Turn to Culture

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Chapter 5 is a critique of “ethnojustice,” a discourse that informs interventions that claim to promote social reconstruction and peace through rebuilding traditional reconciliation mechanisms. In northern Uganda, a community of interest has emerged around the traditional reconciliation agenda among foreign donors in search of African “authenticity” for their aid programs, the Ugandan state as it looks to undermine formal legal accountability, and older male Acholi who have lost significant authority as a result of the war and face challenges from the new forms of organization that have emerged among women and youth. In this context, the performance of traditional reconciliation rituals anchors the extension of an internationally-supported, unaccountable form of power within Acholi society that has the effect of trying to discipline civilians into becoming “proper” Acholi within a patriarchal social order.

Keywords: ethnojustice; traditional justice; reconciliation; Acholi; culture

Chapter.  12078 words. 

Subjects: International Relations

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