Truth, Reparations and Social Cohesion: Transitional Justice Lessons from Peru, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Truth, Reparations and Social Cohesion

Transitional Justice Lessons from Peru, 1st Edition

By Elisabeth Bunselmeyer


256 pages | 1 B/W Illus.

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Hardback: 9780367338473
pub: 2020-03-13
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This book addresses the effectiveness of transitional justice mechanisms for repairing social cohesion.

Truth commissions and reparation programs are implemented worldwide to enhance social cohesion, peace and democracy in post-conflict settings. Most claims about transitional justice measures are, however, normatively and not empirically based.The book questions whether attention from a Truth and Reconciliation Commission can truly change the lives of the violence-affected people and whether monetary compensations or communal projects in form of milk cows can ever truly "repair" the harm suffered. The within-country comparative case study analyses the effects of the commission and reparation program in Peru. It studies the post-conflict situation and the development of social cohesion in communities affected by the internal armed conflict. Using detailed empirical data this analysis reveals why the "reparation" of social cohesion in Peru was an impossible task. Contributing to a broader understanding of the impact of nationally-applied transitional justice instruments in local settings, the book further offers a new framework for analyzing social cohesion as one of the aims of transitional justice processes.

Offering a detailed account of transitional justice processes and social cohesion on the micro-level, as well as an important analysis of their relationship, this innovative monograph will be invaluable for transitional justice scholars and students, as well as for international political and societal actors who are involved in transitional justice measures

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Tables and figures



  1. Introduction
  2. Transitional Justice and why it matters

    Repairing Social Cohesion

    Research Focus and Framework

    Transitional Justice and Social Cohesion

    Findings and Contribution

    The Plan of the Book

  3. Transitional Justice and Social Cohesion: A new Framework
  4. 2.1 Social Cohesion Indicator

    2.2 Social Cohesion and Armed Conflict

    2.3 The Impact of Transitional Justice on Social Coehsion

  5. The Challenge of Measuring Social Impact: The Quasi-Experimental Research Design
  6. 3.1 The Analytical Framework: Stages of Transitional Justice Impact

    3.2 The Quasi-Experimental Research Design

    3.3 Cases

    3.4 Data

  7. Villages, Truth, Reparations and Social Cohesion
  8. PART I Four Post-Conflict Communities

    4.1 Lucanamarca: Transitional Justice Overload in the Andes

    4.2 Chuschi: Hardly any Notice of Transitional Justice

    4.3 Santa Rosa: Reparations the "lost" Region of the Jungle

    4.4. Kimbiri: Transitional Justice and its Non-Importance

    4.5. Discussion

  9. Villages, Truth, Reparations and Social Cohesion
  10. PART II Comparison of Ten Post-Conflict Communities

    5.1. Six further Post-Conflict Communities

    San Antonio de Julo

    Carmen de Alanya


    San Juan de Uchuyri

    Nuevo Progreso


    5.2. The Implementation of Transitional Justice

    5.3. The Awareness and Perception of Transitional Justice

    5.4. The Impact on Social Cohesion

  11. Individuals, Truth, Reparations and Social Cohesion
  12. 6.1 Receivers, Non-Receivers and Observers in the Focus

    6.2 Victims and Non-Victims in the Focus

    6.3 Men and Women in the Focus

    6.4 Authorities and Non-Authorities in the Focus

    6.5 Getting to Know the "Contented" Villagers

    6.6 Getting to Know the "Socially-Minded" Villagers

  13. Conclusion

Assessing the Impact of Transitional Justice on Social Cohesion in Peru

The Ambiguity of Truth and Reparations in Peru

The Challenge to Assess Social Impact

The (Im)possible Task of Repair in Post-Conflict Societies



About the Author

Dr. Elisabeth Bunselmeyer is based at the GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies and University of Hamburg. She holds a PhD in Political Science from University of Marburg and was honoured the Christiane-Rajewsky-Award 2018 by the German Association for Peace and Conflict Studies. Her areas of work and research are the social development in post-conflict settings and the impact of transitional justice processes in Latin America

About the Series

Transitional Justice

The study of transitional justice has emerged as one of the most diverse and intellectual exciting developments in the social sciences in the last two decades. From its origins in human rights activism and comparative political science the field is increasingly characterised by its geographic and disciplinary breadth. Routledge’s Transitional Justice series publishes innovative work across a range of disciplines working on transitional justice related topics: including law, sociology, criminology, psychology, anthropology, political science, development studies and international relations.

The series includes titles which address larger theoretical questions on transitional justice, including the intersection of notions such as justice, truth, accountability, impunity and the construction of transitional justice knowledge. It also contains critical and theoretically informed empirical work on the workings of institutions such as truth commissions, community based reconciliation, victim empowerment, ex-combatant demobilisation, or regional discussions on practical programmes in particular areas. Finally, the series covers the legal aspects of transitional justice; although, avoiding dry, overly technical or dull legal texts, it specialises in a style of legal scholarship that reflects the energy and vitality of this exciting field.

For further details on the series please contact the Series Editor.

Kieran McEvoy

Professor of Law and Transitional Justice

School of Law

Queens University Belfast


44 (0) 2890973873

[email protected]

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LAW / General
LAW / Comparative
LAW / Criminal Law / General
LAW / International
LAW / Remedies & Damages
POLITICAL SCIENCE / History & Theory
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Political Freedom & Security / Human Rights
POLITICAL SCIENCE / World / Caribbean & Latin American
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Genocide & War Crimes
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Corruption & Misconduct
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Criminology