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The Kenyan TJRC
An Outsider's View from the Inside

$38.99 (P)

  • Date Published: July 2018
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781108434508

$ 38.99 (P)

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About the Authors
  • Between 1963 and 2008 Kenya experienced systematic atrocities, economic crimes, ethnic violence, and the illegal taking of land. To come to terms with these historical injustices and gross violations of human rights, the Kenyan Truth, Justice and Reconciliation Commission (TJRC) was established. From the perspective of an insider and academic expert, The Kenyan TJRC: An Outsider's View from the Inside reveals for the first time the debates and decisions made within the Commission, including how the Kenyan Commission became the first such commission to recommend that its Chair be prosecuted for gross violations of human rights. This book is one of the few insider accounts of a truth commission, and one of the few that reflects on the limitations and opportunities of such a commission. The Kenyan TJRC provides lessons and recommendations to those interested in addressing historical injustices through a truth commission process. The full copy of the Final Report of the Kenyan TJRC, along with other supporting documents, can be found at the following site:

    • Will correct some misimpressions of what the commission did, and why it succeeded and failed the way that it did
    • Provides an assessment of the limitations of a truth commission, in particular the Kenyan truth commission
    • Provides an insider's view of the TJRC
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    Reviews & endorsements

    ‘The Kenyan TJRC provides the fascinating, definitive history of the Kenyan Truth, Justice and Reconciliation Commission that Kenya's own government sought to suppress. Unlike any other text, Slye offers an equally unforgettable human story about how a courageous outsider fought to keep a process fair, so that even a deeply flawed human rights institution could make a difference.' Harold Hongju Koh, Yale Law School, Former Legal Adviser and Assistant Secretary for Human Rights, US Department of State

    ‘Applying a Band-Aid to gaping national wounds has become a political habit in Kenya, but for true healing to take place, the country needs to go deeper. The story of how the TJRC was born, the hurdles it negotiated in order to do its work, the heart-breaking evidence it heard and its eventual findings must surely be part of that process. It's good to see this finally published.' Michela Wrong, author of It's Our Turn to Eat: The Story of a Kenyan Whistleblower

    ‘Ronald C. Slye tells us the unvarnished truth about the complex and sometimes tortuous story of the Kenyan TJRC. Perhaps even more importantly he draws crucial lessons for negotiators and activists alike. A must read for all those working in the fields of transitional justice and peacebuilding!' David Tolbert, President of the International Center for Transitional Justice

    'This fascinating book delves into the fissures that emerged among the commissioners, why the international members of the commission issued a dissent from some of the body’s findings, and the broader implications of the commission’s work for Kenya and other postconflict societies. Slye’s book makes for compelling reading, whether he is discussing the personal foibles of the commissioners, the backroom negotiations and compromises that mark such work, the legal issues involved, or the broader context of Kenyan politics.' Nicolas van de Walle, Foreign Affairs

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    Product details

    • Date Published: July 2018
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781108434508
    • length: 308 pages
    • dimensions: 227 x 153 x 17 mm
    • weight: 0.46kg
    • contains: 6 b/w illus. 1 map
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    List of maps, photos and cartoons
    Foreword by Desmond Tutu
    1. The end game
    2. The most expansive mandate
    3. The elephant in the room
    4. I am Kenyan: voices of the Wanachi
    5. The elephant returns
    6. Ships passing in the night: the ICC, the Kenyan government, and the TJRC

  • Author

    Ronald C. Slye, Seattle University
    Ronald C. Slye is Professor of Law at Seattle University, School of Law. He was one of three international Commissioners on the Kenyan TJRC and in addition to his teaching and writing in the area, he was a consultant to the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission. He was co-recipient of the Trial Lawyers of the Year Award for human rights litigation in the US in 1995 and is co-author of International Criminal Law and Its Enforcement (2010), one of the leading casebooks on international criminal law in the US market.


    Desmond Tutu

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