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Can torture be justified in exceptional circumstances? In this timely work, Michelle Farrell asks how and why this question has become such a central debate. She argues that the ticking bomb scenario is a fiction which blinds us to the reality of torture and investigates what it is that that scenario fails to represent. Farrell aims to reframe how we think about torture, and critically reflects on the historical and contemporary approaches to its use in exceptional situations. She demonstrates how torture, from its use in Algeria to the 'War on Terror', has been misrepresented, and appraises the legalist, extra-legalist and absolutist assessments of exception to the torture prohibition. Employing Giorgio Agamben's theory of the state of exception as a foil, Farrell deconstructs these approaches and goes on to propose her own theory of exceptional torture.Read more
- Provides the reader with a cogent account of the flaws in the contemporary torture debate
- Presents and critically appraises the various legal analytical positions within the debate
- Situates the question of exceptional torture within a broader philosophical context
Reviews & endorsements
"The great merit of this book is that its real focus is the surreal nature of the debate itself and, by seeking to move beyond it, aims to relocate that debate … an important contribution to a debate that is not going to go away and it has important implications for the manner in which that debate is to be conducted."
Michael Evans, International and Comparative Law Quarterly
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- Date Published: October 2013
- format: Hardback
- isbn: 9781107030794
- length: 291 pages
- dimensions: 235 x 156 x 22 mm
- weight: 0.55kg
- availability: In stock
Table of Contents
1. State of law
2. The ticking bomb scenario: origins, usages and the contemporary discourse
3. State of exception
4. Legal, extralegal or illegal? The academic debate on the use of torture in exceptional circumstances
5. The torture prohibition and the torture debate: moral aspects.
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