Imperial Justice: Africans in Empires Court by Bonny Ibhawoh

Imperial Justice: Africans in Empires Court

byBonny Ibhawoh

Hardcover | November 14, 2013

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Imperial Justice explores the imperial control of judicial governance and the adjudication of colonial difference in British Africa. Focusing on the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council and the colonial regional Appeal Courts for West Africa and East Africa, it examines how judicialdiscourses of native difference and imperial universalism in local disputes influenced practices of power in colonial settings and shaped an evolving jurisprudence of Empire. Arguing that the Imperial Appeal Courts were key sites where colonial legal modernity was fashioned, the book examines the tensions that permeated the colonial legal system such as the difficulty of upholding basic standards of British justice while at the same time allowing for local customarydivergence which was thought essential to achieving that justice. The modernizing mission of British justice could only truly be achieved through recognition of local exceptionality and difference. Natives who appealed to the Courts of Empire were entitled to the same standards of justice as their'civilized' colonists, yet the boundaries of racial, ethnic, and cultural difference somehow had to be recognized and maintained in the adjudicatory process. Meeting these divergent goals required flexibility in colonial law-making as well as in the administration of justice. In the paradox ofintegration and differentiation, imperial power and local cultures were not always in conflict but were sometimes complementary and mutually reinforcing. The book draws attention not only to the role of Imperial Appeal Courts in the colonies but also to the reciprocal place of colonized peoples in shaping the processes and outcomes of imperial justice. A valuable addition to British colonial literature, this book places Africa in a central role, andexamines the role of the African colonies in the shaping of British Imperial jurisprudence.

About The Author

Bonny Ibhawoh is an Associate Professor of History and Human Rights at McMaster University. He teaches and researches in the fields of African, imperial and legal history, human rights, and peace/conflict studies. His last book, Imperialism and Human Rights, was named Choice Outstanding Academic Title.
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Title:Imperial Justice: Africans in Empires CourtFormat:HardcoverDimensions:250 pagesPublished:November 14, 2013Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199664846

ISBN - 13:9780199664849

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Table of Contents

1. Umpires of Empire2. Judging Empire3. Native Assessors and Alien Courts4. Medicine Murders and Blood Money5. Litigious Chiefs and Land Palavers6. Unknown God: The Limits of Imperial Justice7. ConclusionsBibliography