Reducing Genocide to Law: A Probing Reflection on Empathy and Our Faith in Global Justice

Thursday, September 6, 2012 - 10:00am to 11:30am

Freedom House
1301 Connecticut Avenue, NW Suite 4
Washington, DC 20036

Freedom House invites you to attend an event to discuss the conclusions of Dr. Payam Akhavan’s book Reducing Genocide to Law. This original and daring book, written by a renowned scholar and practitioner, critically examines the crime of genocide. Could the prevailing view that genocide is the ultimate crime be wrong? Is it possible that it is actually on an equal footing with war crimes and crimes against humanity? Is the power of the word genocide derived from something other than jurisprudence? And why should a hierarchical abstraction assume such importance in conferring meaning on suffering and injustice? Could reducing a reality that is beyond reason and words into a fixed category undermine the very progress and justice that such labeling purports to achieve? For some, these questions may border on the international law equivalent of blasphemy.

Payam Akhavan left Iran as a child to flee persecution and has since played a historic role in international criminal law and global justice. He is an Associate Professor at McGill University’s Law Faculty and has written extensively on the subjects of genocide and international law. Professor Akhavan has served as the Legal Advisor to the Prosecutor’s Office of the International Criminal Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda and has worked with the United Nations in the former Yugoslavia, Latin America, Southeast Asia, and Africa. Additionally, he is an expert on Iranian civil society.

Join us as Dr. Akhavan discusses his work.

To RSVP for this event, please visit the following link: Reducing Genocide to Law: A Probing Reflection on Empathy and Our Faith in Global Justice

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