Source: (2009) International Journal of Transitional Justice. 3(1):5–27.

Transitional justice appears to be an established field of scholarship connected to a field of practice on how to deal with past human rights abuses in societies in transition. The original focus of transitional justice discourse was that human rights law requires accountability in transitions, rooted in the discipline of law. Over time, this focus has been expanded to include a much broader range of mechanisms, goals and inquiries across a range of disciplines. In order to probe the current state of the field, this article argues against the current conception of transitional justice as a praxis-based interdisciplinary field. It suggests that there is a hidden politics to how transitional justice has been constructed as an interdisciplinary field that obscures tensions between the range of practices and goals that it now incorporates. (excerpt)