Transcultural Justice at the Tokyo Tribunal

The Allied Struggle for Justice, 1946-48


Volume Editor:
While the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg has been at the centre of scholarly attention, the Tokyo Tribunal has for decades been largely neglected. This is surprising insofar as this tribunal was a well-organized Allied endeavour and prefigured the international courts and tribunals of our day. Eleven national teams were sent to Tokyo between 1946 and 1948 to bring about justice in the aftermath of the Pacific War. This volume offers an innovative approach to the Tokyo Tribunal as an arena of transcultural engagement. It contextualizes legal agents as products of transnational forces, constituted through dialogues about legal concepts and processes of faction-making. The endeavour was challenged by different national policies, divergent legal traditions, and varying cultural perceptions of the task ahead.
Contributors are Milinda Banerjee, Anja Bihler, Neil Boister, David M. Crowe, Kerstin von Lingen, Narrelle Morris, Hitoshi Nagai, Valentyna Polunina, Ann-Sophie Schoepfel, Lisette Schouten, James Burnham Sedgwick, Yuki Takatori and Urs Matthias Zachmann.

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Kerstin von Lingen is a historian at the Cluster of Excellence “Asia and Europe in a Global Context” at Heidelberg University and leads the Research Group “Transcultural Justice. Legal Flows and the Emergence of International Justice within the East Asian War Crimes Trials, 1945-1954”.
''It contains a number of important revelations regarding the professional attributes of those individuals who were named to join the prosecution or the tribunal, their behind-the-scenes communications with their respective home governments, and their individual contributions to the making of the Tokyo Trial. It also hosts shining examples of deep archival research, based on which the volume contributors present new perspectives to broaden our understanding of the trial. In sum, this edited volume is recommended to all future students of the Tokyo Trial and, more generally, the history of international justice in Asia and the Pacific''. Yuma Totani in Pacific Affairs , 92, 4 (2019).


List of Illustrations
Notes for Readers
List of Contributors

Kerstin von Lingen
1 Building Blocs: Communities of Dissent, Manufactured Majorities and International Judgment in Tokyo
James Burnham Sedgwick
2 Sir William Webb and Beyond: Australia and the International Military Tribunal for the Far East
Narrelle Morris
3 MacArthur, Keenan and the American Quest for Justice at the IMTFE
David M. Crowe
4 On a ‘Sacred Mission’: Representing the Republic of China at the International Military Tribunal for the Far East
Anja Bihler
5 Managing Justice: Judge William Patrick, Prosecutor Arthur ­Comyns-Carr and British Approaches to the IMTFE
Kerstin von Lingen
6 The Soviets at Tokyo: International Justice at the Dawn of the Cold War
Valentyna Polunina
7 ‘Little Useful Purpose Would be Served by Canada’: Ottawa’s View of the Tokyo War Crimes Trial
Yuki Takatori
8 New Zealand’s Approach to International Criminal Law from Versailles to Tokyo
Neil Boister
9 Burdened by the ‘Shadow of War’: Justice Jaranilla and the Tokyo Trial
Hitoshi Nagai
10 Defending French National Interests? The Quai d’Orsay, Ambassador Zinovy Peshkoff, Justice Henri Bernard and the Tokyo Trial
Ann-Sophie Schoepfel
11 In the Footsteps of Grotius: The Netherlands and Its Representation at the International Military Tribunal for the Far East, 1945-1948
Lisette Schouten
12 India’s ‘Subaltern Elites’ and the Tokyo Trial
Milinda Banerjee
13 Loser’s Justice: The Tokyo Trial from the Perspective of the Japanese Defence Counsels and the Legal Community
Urs Matthias Zachmann

Appendix: The Composition of the Court at Tokyo

Academics, graduate students and upper level undergraduates in international law, (postwar) global history, political science, legal anthropology and 20th-century East Asia.
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