Title
Situating social imaginaries in transitional justice : the Bushingantahe in Burundi
Author
Faculty/Department
Institute of Development Policy and Management
Publication type
article
Publication
Oxford :Oxford University Press ,
Subject
Politics
Law
Source (journal)
The international journal of transitional justice. - Oxford, 2007, currens
Volume/pages
6(2012) :1 , p. 40-59
ISSN
1752-7716
ISI
000301044200003
Carrier
E
Target language
English (eng)
Full text (Publishers DOI)
Affiliation
University of Antwerp
Abstract
The use of customary institutions and mechanisms is increasingly presented as a solution to operational problems of justice in general and transitional justice in particular. Based on historical research and several months of fieldwork in rural Burundi between 2007 and 2010, this article argues that both attempts, mainly by the Burundian government, to sideline the 'traditional' bashingantahe councils as day-to-day mediators and potentially important actors in the transitional justice process, and strategies, mainly used by international donors and organizations, to rehabilitate and modernize the institution, are obscuring the issue at stake. A shift in focus from the bashingantahe as an institution to the bushingantahe as an organizing principle of social existence is needed. Forms of social imaginaries such as the bushingantahe should be taken into account as sources and outcomes of (transitional) justice.
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