Beyond evidence: the use of archives in transitional justice

Viebach, Julia and Hovestädt, Dagmar and Lühe, Ulrike. (2021) Beyond evidence: the use of archives in transitional justice. The International Journal of Human Rights, 25 (3). pp. 381-402.

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Official URL: https://edoc.unibas.ch/81321/

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Currently there is little systematic knowledge about the underlying processes of record creation, archive production and preservation or the usage of archives within transitional justice (TJ). In this introduction to the special issue on the use of archives in TJ, we identify four main areas in which gaps exist: methodological particularities in researching archives in TJ contexts; a deficit in our knowledge on the role of the archivist in the archival processes; an insufficient understanding of the relationship between human rights documentation, archives and justice endeavours which is oftentimes seen as per se furthering accountability; lastly and as a result, an insufficient conceptualisation of archives which are often regarded as storage of (objective) information and in TJ accordingly perceived as uncontested 'evidence'. We conclude that human rights documentation and archives need to be studied in the contexts of both their creation and their use to understand their effects on TJ. Only if we deconstruct the inherent power dynamics, representations and voices, can we (a) reassemble them in a new transitional order that better supports the aims of TJ; and (b) acknowledge not only the emancipatory but also the limiting and marginalising powers that archives have during transition processes and beyond.
Faculties and Departments:04 Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > Departement Gesellschaftswissenschaften > Fachbereich Politikwissenschaft
09 Associated Institutions > swisspeace foundation
UniBasel Contributors:Lühe, Ulrike
Item Type:Article
Article Subtype:Research Article
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
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Last Modified:02 Mar 2021 15:16
Deposited On:24 Feb 2021 07:13

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