Preventing mass-scale atrocities has been a global imperative since the end of World War II when the international community vowed that the Holocaust would ‘never again’ be repeated. Since then, new regulatory models have been devised to tackle mass atrocities as a key threat to international security, among which a more prominent model has been that of transitional justice. Through its tools and mechanisms for ‘dealing’ with problematic pasts, the global project of transitional justice is positioned as a positive force for ensuring non-repetition of violations in post-conflict societies. Never Again challenges the idea of transitional justice as a benevolent project of global governance and reevaluates the (dis)connections between two global imperatives of dealing with the past and ensuring a peaceful future. In theorizing transitional justice as a structure of global governance with survival, legitimacy, and permanence needs, the book investigates how and why the project originally designed to put the promise of 'Never Again' into practice serves to trigger and worsen the insecurities which keep post-conflict societies anxious about the future of peace. In doing so, the book rethinks what ‘Never Again’ means for post-conflict societies.
Book manuscript currently in the final stages of development [forthcoming with Cambridge University Press].
While historical revisionism is commonly used to justify offensive foreign policies and mobilise war support, little scholarly attention is paid to its scope and importance in the Western Balkans, a region that continues to test Europe's security assurances. To advance the knowledge on prevention of conflict repetition and ontological security, this project investigates how historical revisionism, particularly atrocity crimes denial, emerges, develops and diminishes in states' foreign policies during post-conflict reckoning with the past.
Underpinned by Critical Security Studies, the project aims to a) map out the use of historical revisionism by revisionist governments in Serbia, Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, b) establish the factors influencing revisionist behaviour and c) understand the role of 'ordinary' people in triggering, challenging and correcting such behaviour. The project employs document analysis, focus groups and interviews to trace the external/internal dynamics influencing the development and decline of revisionist states and carries significant policy-oriented implications.
This is a British Academy funded sponsored project [May 2023 - January 2025].