The Concept of Race in International Criminal Law  book cover
1st Edition

The Concept of Race in International Criminal Law

ISBN 9781032089140
Published June 30, 2021 by Routledge
308 Pages

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Book Description

Members of racial groups are protected under international law against genocide, persecution, and apartheid. But what is race – and why was this contentious term not discussed when drafting the Statute of the International Criminal Court? Although the law uses this term, is it legitimate to talk about race today, let alone convict anyone for committing a crime against a racial group?

This book is the first comprehensive study of the concept of race in international criminal law. It explores the theoretical underpinnings for the crimes of genocide, apartheid, and persecution, and analyses all the relevant legal instruments, case law, and scholarship. It exposes how the international criminal tribunals have largely circumvented the topic of race, and how incoherent jurisprudence has resulted in inconsistent protection. The book provides important new interpretations of a problematic concept by subjecting it to a multifaceted and interdisciplinary analysis. The study argues that race in international criminal law should be constructed according to the perpetrator's perception of the victims’ ostensible racial otherness. The perpetrator’s imagination as manifested through his behaviour defines the victims’ racial group membership.

It will be of interest to students and practitioners of international criminal law, as well as those studying genocide, apartheid, and race in domestic and international law.

Table of Contents

1. Constructing race for international criminal law; 

2. Historical aspects of race;

3. The concept of race in the law of genocide;

4. The concept of race in the law of apartheid;

5. The concept of race in the law of persecution;

6. Conclusion;

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Carola Lingaas is an associate professor of law at VID Specialized University in Oslo (Norway). She holds a PhD in international criminal law from the University of Oslo. She has published within the areas of international criminal law, human rights law, and migration. In most of her research projects, Professor Lingaas draws on research from the social sciences for the interpretation of the law. Prior to joining academia, Carola Lingaas worked for several years for the Red Cross, nationally and internationally.