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Provides articles discussing restorative justice advancements in Asia. Articles appear in the order in which they were added to the site with the most recent appearing first.

Saade, Marta Vides. Restorative Justice, Empowerment Theory, and Transformative Spirituality: Searching for Authentic Strategies in China, Hong Kong, India, and Korea
"When writing about restorative justice, the epistemic location of both writer and reader are important to consider in order preserve the transformational potential of restorative justice in its thickest description. In Spanish we say there are two ways to know: saber, to know intellectually and conocer, to know in your heart. As a person of the North, a lawyer and Roman Catholic ethicist living in the United States of America, and as a person of the South, a Nahuatl danzante equally rooted in Cuscatlan - the country known as El Salvador after European contact - formed by stories of ancestors who migrated there from Europe and Palestine, I know that the threads of authentic spiritual sustenance and empowerment for a person can weave a complicated tapestry. This modest essay is my granito de arena (grain of sand) added to the conversation about restorative justice, empowerment, and spirituality." (Abstract)
Austin, Timothy. "Unexpected Dimensions of Informal Social Control: A View from the Philippine Sitio"
This article amplifies the finding that a number of situational variables surprisingly augment the time-honored tradition of amicable settlement among Fillipinos. Earlier reports emphasized cultural and personality patterns as a foundation of a preference of informal mediation of disputes and an avoidance of government agencies of control. Contemporary features, which include distinct political boundaries, unmemployment, communication disability in a low tech society,and the desire for bribery, among others, also appear to emerge as potentially meaningful variables. The findings allow for the construction of a number of prepositions that predict how the situation impacts on informal social control. Field research in the relatively volatile area of northwest Mindanao, especially in isolated villages (sitios), suggest a need for further clarification.
Miyazawa, Setsuo. "The politics of increasing punitiveness and the rising populism in Japanese criminal justice policy"
The purpose of this article is (1) to establish that increasing punitiveness characterizes criminal justice policies in Japan and (2) to explain this trend in terms of the penal populism promoted by crime victims and supporting politicians. This article first examines newspaper articles to illuminate the increasingly punitive character of recent criminal justice policies in Japan in terms of both legislation and judicial decisions. The next section discusses the main contributing factors behind this trend and its public acceptance. The next two sections discuss two related issues: the public’s subjective sense of security, and the lack of a role for empirical criminologists in criminal justice policy making in Japan. The concluding section compares the Japanese and Anglo-American situations and argues that the same penal populism seen in Anglo- American countries is rapidly rising in Japan, and that public distrust of government has ironically increased the state’s investigative, prosecutorial, and sentencing powers in Japan. This article closes with the conjecture that police, prosecutors, and judges are unlikely to relinquish their increased power in the event that they gain the public’s trust and equally unlikely in the event of a change of the ruling party.
Keenapan, Nattha. Restorative justice.
Wit’s case was diverted to the Family and Community Group Conferencing (FCGC), a “child-friendly” government programme that deals with children who have committed minor crimes. In addition to diverting children away from the formal system, it seeks to restore social harmony between the victim and child offender as well as within the community at large. (excerpt)
Klosky, Tricia and Kethineni, Sesha. "Juvenile Justice and Due Process Rights of Children in India and the United States"
This article offers a cross-cultural comparison of current and past juvenile court systems in India and the United States. Issues such as juvenile court development, differences and similarities in juvenile court philosophies, and the impact of legislative reforms are explored within political, social, and legal contexts. Specifically, the juvenile justice system in India is examined and analyzed within the context of how changes in philosophy and terminology have affected juvenile court practices and procedures. Our conclusion is that in both countries the juvenile justice system often fails to achieve the rehabilitative agendas set forth by their legislative and child welfare bodies.
Liu, Jianhong. "Predicting Recidivism in a Communitarian Society: China"
Abstract: Research on the prediction of recidivism has largely been an enterprise of Western criminology. Therefore, the identification and selection of predictors has tended to follow the individualistic traditions of theWest. Important advances in models and methods have not been extended to non-Western societies such as China. This article explores the implications of communitarian features of Chinese urban communities for prediction of recidivism. The article applies the perspective of social capital to the specification of predictors. Available community social-capital measures are included in the prediction model to capture the effects of communitarian cultural features. The results indicate that social capital variables generally have significant effects.
Broadhurst, Roderic G. and Zhong, Lena Y.. "Building Little Safe and Civilized Communities: Community Crime Prevention With Chinese Characteristics?"
This article describes a community crime prevention program in China, set against a background of rapid economic development, large internal population migration, and increasing crime rates. Traditional social control in China has been transformed to adapt to the new reform era, yet some mechanisms remain intact. Crime prevention measures and strategies resemble those adopted in the West; however, the differences, constituting the so-called Chinese characteristics with community crime prevention are significant.
Sreekumar, R. . Restorative Justice practices in India: some glimpses.
Realisation of mistake, admittance of guilt and forgiveness are some of the essential requirements of restorative justice. The present Indian criminal justice system – a hangover of the colonial times – hardly bears any semblance to instances of restorative justice or forgiveness of the ancient times or the modern ones outside the formal system. This article summarises a few such instances. (excerpt)
. Responding to everyday rape in Cambodia: rhetorics, realities and somroh somruel
This paper analyses a dilemma for victims of 'everyday rape' in Cambodia: their community's preferred response is somroh somruel, a customary dispute resolution process, but pressure is exerted by the state and by international and local NGOs to use the criminal justice system, which is corrupt and inaccessible to all but an elite. Drawing from interviews with NGO staff and field research by NGOs, we find a clash between human rights rhetoric and the realities faced by rape victims and their families. Human rights and other western donor organisations need to consider multiple meanings of justice, particularly in rural areas in countries like Cambodia, where 'justice' situates morality within the restoration of social harmony and the repair of aggrieved relationships. Greater attention should be given to supporting and improving somroh somruel, alongside developing more accessible and accountable conventional criminal justice responses. (author's abstract)
Morris, Allison and Maxwell, Gabrielle and Hayes, Hennessey. Conferencing and Restorative Justice
Family group conferences in the New Zealand youth justice system have been the centre of international interest since they were introduced there in 1989, and they have since been imitated by a number of countries. Enabling legislation for juvenile offenders has been passed in New Zealand, Australia, England and Wales, Canada, Ireland, and Singapore. Also in New Zealand, legislation has been passed for adult offenders. Various versions of conferencing for young offenders have been introduced in Belgium, Hong Kong, Japan, the Netherlands, South Africa, Sweden, and the United States. More recently, new initiatives have been taken to introduce restorative conferencing in Brazil and Argentina for both adults and young people. In this chapter, we describe restorative justice conferencing for juveniles with a particular emphasis on New Zealand and Australia and assess the extent to which it can be said to reflect restorative justice processes and to result in restorative justice outcomes using research chiefly drawn from Australasia and North America. In addition, we examine data on the extent to which conferencing can reduce re-offending. But first, we discuss the development of restorative justice conferencing. (excerpt)
Schärf, Wilfred. The Challenges Facing Non-State Justice Systems in Southern Africa: How do, and How Should Governments Respond?
The structure of this paper starts, Firstly with an examination of the terminology used over the last 50 years when talking about non-state justice. I try to show that it is not all semantics but that the names take on particular ideological baggage, depending on whether the form of non-state justice is pro-state or anti-state. It also depends on who is talking, a person in a liberation struggle or someone opposing that liberation. This is to contextualize what we nowadays use quite loosely, terms such as restorative justice and traditional justice. Secondly, I will explore the different forms that non-state justice takes in the six countries under scrutiny as well as examples from India, Bangladesh, the Phillipines and Latin America. The state's responses to these phenomena will then be sketched followed by recommendations about how states, development-donors and citizens could contribute to better governance and more effective co-operation between different forms of non-states justice and the state. Thirdly I will share some of the developments in the SA Law Commission project group on Community Dispute Resolution Structures (CDRS).
Philpott, Daniel. The Politics of Past Evil: Religion, Reconciliation, and the Dilemmas of Transitional Justice
What unfolds in the following pages, then, is a conversation about how theology and politics are related in the theory and practice of reconciliation, situated in the context of transitional states. What place does reconciliation have in the politics of transition? What are the warrants for it? Four theorists, two theologians and two philosophers draw explicitly from theological perspectives in answering these questions. The answers are fresh angles in today’s debate. Our conversation, though, also recognizes that reconciliation’s credibility as an approach to politics depends not only on a theoretical foundation but also on an account of its place in the tug and haul of actual political transition. Two political scientists and a historian, all sympathetic to the theological perspectives, then chart the path of reconciliation, sometimes torturous, sometimes propitious, in South Africa, Northern Ireland, Argentina, and Germany. The divide between the two sorts of inquiry is not neat. The theorists are cognizant of contemporary political transitions; the empirically oriented scholars are theoretically conscious. Explicating theological warrants, mapping the texture of actual political transitions, echoing debates within these transitions, our conversation addresses a wide variety of interlocutors, both scholarly and generalist, both with and without theological commitments. (excerpt)
Wing Lo, T and Wong, Dennis and Maxwell, Gabrielle. Diversion From Youth Courts in Five Asia Pacific Jurisdictions: Welfare or Restorative Solutions
This article examines how juvenile offenders are diverted from prosecution in juvenile courts in five Asia Pacific jurisdictions: Queensland, Australia; New Zealand; Hong Kong; Singapore; and China. In all of these jurisdictions, there has been a trend away from punitive and retributive approaches to the diversion of juvenile offenders from prosecution in a court to the community-based welfare model and the restorative model. The community-based welfare model relies primarily on counseling, community support, and educational assistance and is usually led by professionals. This model tends to categorize juvenile offenders as having problem behaviors and emotional conditions that require treatment and supervision. The restorative model emphasizes the accountability of juvenile offenders for the harms their behavior caused and uses negotiation among the youth, their victims, and the youth's family to develop measures for repairing the harm done and addressing the youth's behaviors that caused the harm. This model limits the involvement of professionals in decisionmaking about the disposition of the case. New Zealand and Queensland use the restorative model. Criticisms of this model have included the lack of due process and protections for the rights of offenders, as well as the potential for undue influence by the police. Hong Kong and Singapore have adopted a traditional rehabilitation and welfare orientation whereby police divert juveniles from the courts through police cautions and referrals to community support and guidance services operated by social workers. In China, community-based practices such as police cautions, mediation, and educational assistance are used in diverting youth from court-based processing. Community-based sanctions are particularly susceptible to the influence of personal power and persuasion, and outcomes may favor those who have close affiliations with or hold powerful positions in the government. Abstract courtesy of the National Criminal Justice Reference Service, www.ncjrs.gov.
Sugama,Terence. Reconciling the Past: Japan's Wartime Atrocities and the Legacies of Post-War Narrative Tensions between Japan, China and South Korea
This thesis will examine the role of narrative in shaping the Japanese account of its war past in the lead-up and throughout the Second World War and, specifically, Japanese atrocities and aggression directed against China, Korea and its nationals. It will argue that Japan has thus far been unable to definitely resolve those tensions within Japanese society and without, from the victims of atrocity in the People’s Republic of China (China) and the Republic of Korea (South Korea) in forming a coherent wartime narrative that remembers both the horror of war for the Japanese and acknowledges the suffering of their victims. Further, this thesis contends that a meaningful engagement in acts of reconciliation, a tool of restorative justice, between Japan and victims in China and South Korea is both desirable and necessary in alleviating those tensions.
Borer, Tristan Anne. Telling the Truths: Truth Telling and Peace Building in Post-Conflict Societies
Confronting the past has become an established norm for countries undergoing transitions from violence to peace, from authoritarianism to democracy, or both. This book draws from two bodies of literature – peacebuilding and transitional justice – to examine whether truth-telling mechanisms can contribute to sustainable peace and, if so, how and under what conditions. The authors approach these questions by examining whether truth telling contributes to the following elements, all of which are deemed to be constitutive of sustainable peace: reconciliation, human rights, gender equity, restorative justice, the rule of law, the mitigation of violence, and the healing of trauma. (publisher’s description).
Nixon, Rod. The Crisis of Governance in New Subsistence States.
The aim of this article is to explore options for public administration in weak states that lack experience of a self-generated state development process. The article commences with a review of the state development process in pre-historic times. Drawing on weak state writings and sociological theory, and with reference to the state development process as it unfolded in Europe, a critical examination of dominant prescriptions for state-building is then undertaken. Based on the sociological information considered, it is proposed that state-building strategies that may be appropriate for societies with experience of state social organisation and the administration of large surpluses, may be inappropriate for societies which have experienced no internally-generated change in the direction of state social organisation. Yet countries characterised by these later kinds of societies, referred to in this article as new subsistence states, by nature possess a range of local administrative mechanisms capable of operating independently from the state in accordance with the principles of "traditional authority." These local administrative mechanisms have no reliance on the centralised accrual and management of large surpluses for their operation. It is argued--with a particular emphasis on the areas of justice and conflict resolution - that sustainable public administration in new subsistence states will be advantaged by the formal recognition and integration of such local capacities. The article considers recent analysis of developments in the Pacific, and draws on research indicating the effectiveness of local justice and conflict mediation systems in East Timor. (excerpt).
Kashayap, Rina. Restorative Justice Roots in Indian Popular Culture and Gandhian Philosophy.
My engagement with the concept of restorative justice has entailed on occasions a sense of déjà vu and renewing of acquaintance with a friend long forgotten. At times it is the “aha!” feeling, the lifting of the veil that reveals a concealment I did not know existed. This paradoxical state is not a surprise because I come from a land about which “if you say one thing, the opposite is also true.” This aphorism probably emerged because the young nation-state of India is one of the oldest civilizations. Indian culture is multicultural, multireligious, and multilingual, a reservoir of multiple traditions. In India, there is also a practical quotidian existence of tradition(s) and modernity (see Ramanujan, 1989). (excerpt)
Anonymous. Kake Circle Peacemaking
In 1999, in an effort to curb youth alcohol abuse, tribal members of the Organized Village of Kake(federally recognized Tribe of Kake, Alaska) established the Healing Heart Council and Circle Peacemaking, a reconciliation and sentencing process embedded in Tlingit traditions. Working in seamless conjunction with Alaska 's state court system, Circle Peacemaking intervenes in the pernicious cycle by which underage drinking becomes an entrenched pattern of adult alcoholism. Today, the program not only enforces underage drinking sentences in an environment where such accountability had been rare, but also restores the Tlingit culture and heals the Kake community.
. Governing memory: Justice, reconciliation and outreach at the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia.
This article explores how devolved outreach work for the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia works to govern the past as it acts to reshape and reframe potentially ambivalent and conflicting memories of political violence. The article specifically examines an example of outreach targeting a former Khmer Rouge community that has been situated as a key party in Cambodia’s attempts to realize ‘justice’ and ‘reconciliation’. The article analyses the sites and crucibles of memory that outreach work for the court utilizes in licensing a particular reading of Cambodia’s experiences of war and genocide. First, the article shows how museum and memorial sites and technologies produce acquiescent, ambivalent and resistant effects among outreach subjects. Second, the article then considers the consolidation and contestation of memory at a public forum event, noting the ways in which outreach attempts to disarm and reconstitute memorial accounts that conflict with the officially sanctioned reading of Cambodia’s past political violence. Whilst acknowledging the unique characteristics of the case, I argue that it is illustrative of the various ways in which Cambodians might question the legitimacy of the Extraordinary Chambers. (author's abstract)
. Restorative justice: Legal framework and practices in the Philippines.
This book, 'Restorative justice: Legal framework and practices in the Philippines' is an initial effort by PhilRights, together with the Ateneo Human Rights Center (AHRC), People's initiative for learning and community Development (PILCD) and the Institute of Bangsamoro studies (IBS), to explore the rudimentary bases of restorative justice in the age-old practices of Filipino indigenous peoples as well as in the existing laws (albeit few) of the land. The idea is to cult from the wisdom of indigenous modes of conflict and dispute-management and from the few existing formal laws rich lessons that could help reorient the country's judicial and punishment regimes.

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