Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Read On! de Londras on detention

(Read On! ... occasional posts on writing worth reading)

I would strongly recommend reading the new book by IntLawGrrls contributor Fiona de Londras (below right).
The book is entitled Detention in the 'War on Terror': Can Human Rights Fight Back? (2011), and recently was published by Cambridge University Press.
The book is timely given the ongoing controversy about maintaining the detention facilities at Guantánamo Bay, and the ongoing pursuit of military commission proceedings against those detained by the United States.
Fiona's book provides a detailed and comprehensive overview of the evoluation of detention practices in both the United Kingdom and the United States, giving state-of-the-art comparative analysis on the comparators and differences between both jurisdictions.
The book places its analysis in the context of a compelling and rich discussion of moral panic theory and its relevance to a textured understanding of responses to terrorist violence post the events of 9/11.
What is wonderful about this book is that it also tells an optimistic tale, demonstrating the relative autonomy and resiliance of international law in the face of undulating pressure from partial hegemons. That analysis of resistance is an important contribution to understanding the relative strength of international human rights law norms, and their growth and traction in the face of extra-ordinary challange.
For all those interested in national security and human rights issues, this is a must-read book for 2012.

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