Inside Rwanda's Gacaca<i/> Courts: Seeking Justice After Genocide

Hardcover | December 6, 2016

byBert Ingelaere

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After the 1994 genocide in Rwanda, victims, perpetrators, and the country as a whole struggled to deal with the legacy of the mass violence. The government responded by creating a new version of a traditional grassroots justice system called gacaca. Bert Ingelaere, based on his observation of two thousand gacaca trials, offers a comprehensive assessment of what these courts set out to do, how they worked, what they achieved, what they did not achieve, and how they affected Rwandan society.
            Weaving together vivid firsthand recollections, interviews, and trial testimony with systematic analysis, Ingelaere documents how the gacaca shifted over time from confession to accusation, from restoration to retribution. He precisely articulates the importance of popular conceptions of what is true and just. Marked by methodological sophistication, extraordinary evidence, and deep knowledge of Rwanda, this is an authoritative, nuanced, and bittersweet account of one of the most important experiments in transitional justice after mass violence.

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After the 1994 genocide in Rwanda, victims, perpetrators, and the country as a whole struggled to deal with the legacy of the mass violence. The government responded by creating a new version of a traditional grassroots justice system called gacaca. Bert Ingelaere, based on his observation of two thousand gacaca trials, offers a compre...

Bert Ingelaere is a lecturer at the Institute of Development Policy and Management, University of Antwerp, Belgium. He is the coeditor of Genocide, Risk and Resilience: An Interdisciplinary Approach.
Format:HardcoverDimensions:256 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.8 inPublished:December 6, 2016Publisher:University of Wisconsin PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0299309703

ISBN - 13:9780299309701

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Extra Content

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations                
Acknowledgments                 
List of Abbreviations             
 
Introduction               
1 Learning “to Be Kinyarwanda”      
2 From Genocide to Gacaca             
3 Gacaca Mechanics              
4 Experiencing Gacaca                      
5 The Weight of the State                  
6 Navigating the Social                      
7 A Thousand Hills, a Thousand Gacacas                
8 Shades of Heart                  
Epilogue                     
 
Appendix I: Important Dates            
Appendix II: Supplementary Tables              
Glossary                     
Notes              
References                 
Index

Editorial Reviews

“This is that rare book that systematically examines how ordinary people respond to the transitional justice enacted in their name. Bert Ingelaere’s multisited and multimethod ethnography is a model for how to get at local understandings of grassroots mechanisms. His findings suggest cautionary lessons for anyone interested in making postconflict justice and reconciliation more community-based.”—Lars Waldorf, University of York