International Criminal Justice


Course Code:
LAW 5012
Law Honors/Pass/Restrd Cr/Fail


(Formerly Law 752) The establishment of a global system of international justice reveals that the promises made during the Nuremberg era are not mere history. Over the past decade, the international community has undertaken a considerable investment in enforcing international criminal law in conflict and post-conflict situations with the establishment of the international criminal tribunals for the former Yugoslavia, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, East Timor, Cambodia, and Lebanon. As these ad hoc institutions wind down, the International Criminal Court (ICC) has become fully functional, although it is plagued by challenges to its legitimacy, erratic state cooperation, and persistent perceptions of inefficacy and inefficiency. Moreover, the global commitment to international justice remains inconsistent as calls for criminal accountability for the situations in Sri Lanka, South Sudan, and Syria-among others-go unanswered. This intensive mini-course in the new September Term will introduce students to the law, institutions, and actors that constitute the system of international criminal justice and to the political environment in which it operates. The classroom component (offered at Stanford during the first week of the course) will offer an elemental analysis of international crimes as they have evolved in international law and focus on the challenges of interpreting these norms in a criminal prosecution. Jurisprudence from the various international tribunals will be scrutinized with an emphasis on understanding the prosecution's burden, available defenses, and sources of proof. The course will culminate in a visit to The Hague in the second week of the course, during which time students will meet with principals from the tribunals, including prosecutors, judges, administrators, and members of the defense bar. In addition to the substance of international criminal law, this course will also serve as an introduction to international legal reasoning, law-making, and institutional design. It will complement existing courses at the Law School covering comparative law, international organizations, international human rights, and public international law. Elements used in grading: The course grade will be based on a series of short papers and active in-class engagement with the assigned materials. CONSENT APPLICATION: To apply for this course, students must complete and submit a Consent Application Form available on the SLS website (Click Courses at the bottom of the homepage and then click Consent of Instructor Forms). See Consent Application Form for instructions and submission deadline.

Past Offerings

2016-2017 Autumn

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