1st Edition

Normative Spaces and Legal Dynamics in Africa

Edited By Katrin Seidel, Hatem Elliesie Copyright 2020
    316 Pages
    by Routledge

    316 Pages
    by Routledge

    African legal realities reflect an intertwining of transnational, regional, and local normative frameworks, institutions, and practices that challenge the idea of the sovereign territorial state. This book analyses the novel constellations of governance actors and conditions under which they interact and compete. The work follows a spatial approach as the emphasis on normative spaces opens avenues to better understand power relations, processes of institutionalization, and the production of legitimacy and normativities themselves.

    Selected case studies from thirteen African countries deliver new empirical data and grounded insights from, and into, particular normative spaces. The individual chapters explore the interrelationships between various normative orders, diverse actors, and their influences. The encounters between different normative understandings and actors open up space and multiple forums for negotiating values. The authors analyse how different doctrines, institutions, and practices are constructed, contested, negotiated, and adapted in translation processes and thereby continuously reshape Africa’s multidimensional normative spaces.

    The volume delivers nuanced views of jurisprudence in Africa and presents an excellent resource for scholars and students of anthropology, legal geography, legal studies, sociology, political sciences, international relations, African studies, and anyone wishing to gain a better understanding of how legal constellations are shaped by unreflected assumptions about the state and the rule of law.

    PROLOGUE Normative Spaces In Africa: Constructing, Contesting, Renegotiating, And Adapting Dynamics
    Katrin Seidel And Hatem Elliesie

    PART I constructing Normative Spaces

    1 ‘Forensic Fetishism’ And Human Rights After Violent Conflict: Uncovering Somaliland’s Troubled Past
    Markus Virgil Hoehne And Shakira Bedoya Sánchez

    2 Transitional Justice Atmospheres: The Role Of Space And Affect In The International Criminal Court’s Outreach Efforts In Northern Uganda
    Jonas Bens

    3 The Libyan Constitution-Making Process: A Tool For State-Building In A Divided Socio-Normative Space?
    Felix-Anselm Van Lier

    PART II Contesting Normative Spaces

    4 Challenges, Limits, And Prospects Of ‘Judicial Governance’ In Nigeria’s Political Translation (1999–2014)
    Hakeem O Yusuf

    5 Contesting Normative Spaces: The Status Of African Traditional Courts Under International Human Rights Law
    Prosper Simbarashe Maguchu

    6 Protecting Groups In Africa: Between International Law, National Law, And Local Customary Law
    Julia Kriesel

    PART III Re-Negotiating Normative Spaces

    7 Mind The Gaps: Renegotiating South African Legal Pluralism Within The Post-Apartheid State
    Olaf Zenker

    8 Judicial Governance In Ghana: Negotiating Jurisdictional Authority In The Post-Colonial State
    Tillmann Schneider

    9 Living Customary Law In South Africa: Negotiating Spaces For Women In Traditional Communities
    Lisa Heemann

    PART IV Adapting Normative Spaces

    10 The Legal Laboratory In Rwanda: Experimentalization And Adaptation
    Stefanie Bognitz

    11 Negotiated Outcomes In Low-Resourced Courts: Tanzania’s Land Courts System
    Kelly Askew

    12 Land Grabbing In Ethiopia: Questioning FDI And Big Government Projects
    Daniel Behailu Gebreamanuel

    13 Whither Courts? Forest Protection In Kenya: Case Of Mau Forest
    Hannah W Wanderi

    EPILOGUE Beyond A Linear Model Of Law In Space And Time
    Anne Griffiths


    Katrin Seidel is a research fellow in the Law and Anthropology Department of the Max  Planck  Institute  for  Social  Anthropology,  Germany,  a  former  post-doctoral  fellow at Käte Hamburger Kolleg, Centre for Global Cooperation Research, and the Academic  Coordinator  of  the  ‘RSF  Hub’  (Joint  Network  Rule  of  Law  support)  at  Freie  Universität  Berlin,  in  collaboration  with  the  German  Federal  Foreign  Office.  Based  on  her  interdisciplinary  background  in  law  and  African/Asian  studies,  her  research  is  situated  at  the  intersection  of  legal  pluralism,  heterogeneous  statehood,  and governance.

    Hatem  Elliesie  is  a  Max  Planck  Group  Leader  in  the  Law  and  Anthropology  Department of the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology as well as member of the Executive Committee of the African Law Association in Germany. He earned his PhD at the Freie University in Berlin, with a dissertation dealing with Ethiopia’s and Eritrea’s related legal history, and holds a Magister Legum Europae (MLE) degree from Malta University and the University of Hannover.