Professor Danielle Celermajer, Department of Sociology and Social Policy, University of Sydney
One of the distinguishing features of theories of injustice and violence in the latter part of the 20th century has been the turn from individual/dispositional to systemic understandings; in simple terms, from bad apples to poisoned orchards. With respect to torture, this turn implies shifting attention from individual perpetrators to the conditions that facilitate, legitimate and authorise individuals’ ethical orientations and their actions.
Comprehensive multi-disciplinary research can help in identifying the different kinds of situational or systemic factors that condition torture but, even then, we are left with the practical problem of how in practice one might alter the situation, especially given the myriad constraints that are involved when working with security organisations.
This presentation focuses on the question of how best to operationalise systemic analyses of injustice, locating this within a broader discussion of torture prevention. It draws on recent work conducted with security sector organisations in Nepal and Sri Lanka as part of a large scale project exploring the prevention of torture.
Danielle Celermajer is a professor of sociology and social policy at the University of Sydney. Before entering academia, she was director of Indigenous policy at the Australian Human Rights Commission. She completed her doctorate in Political Science and International Law as a Fulbright scholar at Columbia University. At the University of Sydney she developed several human rights programs including the EU funded Master of Human Rights and Democratisation (Asia Pacific Program). Most recently, she directed an EU-funded project seeking to develop innovative strategies to reduce and prevent torture in police and military settings in the Asia Pacific region. Her publications include Sins of the Nation and the Ritual of Apology (Cambridge, 2009) and The Cultural History of Law in the Twentieth Century (Bloomsbury 2017).
5.00pm - 5.30pm
5.30pm - 6.30pm
This is a free event but registration is essential.