Journal Article

Language, Culture, Legal Traditions, and International Criminal Justice

Michael Bohlander

in Journal of International Criminal Justice

Volume 12, issue 3, pages 491-513
Published in print July 2014 | ISSN: 1478-1387
Published online June 2014 | e-ISSN: 1478-1395 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jicj/mqu034
Language, Culture, Legal Traditions, and International Criminal Justice

More Like This

Show all results sharing these subjects:

  • Criminal Law
  • International Law
  • International Criminal Law
  • International Humanitarian Law
  • Transnational Crime

GO

Show Summary Details

Preview

Our view of the world is to a large degree a function of our own language and culture. English has become the lingua franca in international legal academic and practical dialogue, and there is a related concern that English — or its direct descendant, Anglo-American — intellectual and legal culture has drawn a thick veneer over the canvas of international criminal law as well. The differences in linguistic and cultural influence need attention as they are a primary determinant of the dialogue that constitutes international justice, not merely in form but possibly also in substance. The conversation, even in the lingua franca, does not seem to happen with the same intensity from all sides to the exchange, because in addition to the question of ability to engage there seems to be a difference in willingness or interest based not merely on lack of language command, but possibly also on cultural aversion. The main systemic divide in the conversations in international criminal law still lies in the dichotomy between common and civil law, and coinciding with that, between a practical/pragmatic approach on the one hand, and a doctrinal/principled attitude on the other. This article attempts to elaborate on some of the conceptual and cultural differences beyond the superficial labels often used in the discussion, such as ‘adversarial v. inquisitorial’, ‘statute v. judge-made law’ etc., as they may impact on the creation of international criminal law.

Journal Article.  10857 words. 

Subjects: Criminal Law ; International Law ; International Criminal Law ; International Humanitarian Law ; Transnational Crime

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content. subscribe or login to access all content.