From a perpetrators’ approach to a respondants’ approach


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A part of a book
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From a perpetrators’ approach to a respondants’ approach
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Approaching Perpetrators: Insights on Ethics, Methods, and Theory
Devresse M.-S., Scalia D.
University of Wisconsin Press
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Anderson K., Jessee E.
By a theoritical analysis based on an empirical research made by semi-directive interviews with 60 people tried (acquitted or condemned) by international criminal tribunals, the contribution focuses on the necessity and the crucial aspects of a Respondants’ approach. While the perpetrators’ approach allows research studies in taking in consideration perpetrators’ in order to understand crimes and the context of their commission, the Respondants’ approach allows to consider the actor’s reflexivity in order to understand institutional answers to mass crimes (as criminal tribunals or truth and reconciliation commissions) in a constructivist perspective.
Based on legal and social sciences tools, this approach takes into consideration the Respondants as key players in these processes. So, the Respondants’ approach is added to the Perpetrators' approach and takes into account the perpetrators of international crimes (or accused people) as a source of knowledge not only about crimes but especially about criminal courts or extra-criminal institutions. The multiple meanings of the term ”respondant” allows to consider our interlocutors in pluralistic manner. First, because the criminal justice asked to respond to certain acts, which is the reason for their intrusion into our research and experience we ask them about. Second, as individuals who have agreed to respond positively to the request which was ours. In doing so, the speeches they deliver answer many questions and highlights issues that have not been questionned.

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27/02/2019 16:12
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20/08/2019 14:03
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