Art & Reconciliation: Conflict, Culture and Community

Our latest project, ‘Art and Reconciliation: Conflict, Culture and Community’ is an innovative collaboration between King’s College London, the London School of Economics and the University of the Arts in London that aims to improve our understanding of a major current and future global security challenge.

This inter-disciplinary project combines history, conflict resolution methodologies, art and creative practice, and both qualitative and quantitative social sciences. The expert team of investigators include Dr Rachel Kerr and Professor James Gow of the Department of War Studies at King’s College London, Dr Denisa Kostovicova of the Department of Government, London School of Economics, and Dr Paul Lowe of the London College of Communication, University of the Arts in London. In addition, the project has its own Artist-in-residence, Dr Milena Michalski, and will work closely with NGO project partners in the Western Balkans to shape its design, production and delivery.

The research is funded through the Large Grant scheme of the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) under the Conflict Theme of the Partnership for Conflict, Crime and Security Research (PaCCS) and through the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF).

For more information, contact: @rachelclarekerr

Whither Transitional Justice? US policy, past experience and future prospects

Zachary Kaufman in conversation with Rachel Kerr

Monday 9 May, 1200-1330

War Studies Meeting Room, K6.07

King’s Building, Strand Campus

King’s College London

Zachary D. Kaufman, JD, Ph.D., is a Fellow (starting July 1, Senior Fellow) at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government as well as a Visiting Fellow at both Yale Law School and Yale University’s Genocide Studies Program. From 2014 to 2015, he served as a Fellow at the U.S. Supreme Court. Prior to academia, he worked on transitional justice issues while serving at the U.S. Departments of State and Justice, the UN International Criminal Tribunals for Rwanda and for the Former Yugoslavia, and the International Criminal Court. He is the author or editor of three books: United States Law and Policy on Transitional Justice: Principles, Politics, and Pragmatics (2016); Social Entrepreneurship in the Age of Atrocities: Changing Our World (2012); and After Genocide: Transitional Justice, Post-Conflict Reconstruction, and Reconciliation in Rwanda and Beyond (2009).


The Visual Jurisprudence of Transition: Art at the Constitutional Court in South Africa

Tuesday 1 November, 1300-1400

War Studies Meeting Room, K6.07, King’s Building, Strand Campus, King’s College London

Speaker: Eliza Garnsey, University of Cambridge

Chair: Dr Rachel Kerr, King’s College London

The Constitutional Court of South Africa stands on the site of several former notorious prisons where ‘virtually every important political leader in South African history from Mahatma Gandhi to Nelson Mandela as well as scores of ordinary South Africans caught in the web of colonial and apartheid repression’ (Segal, 2006) were once imprisoned. The Court is symbolically significant—representing South Africa’s transition—and physically significant—establishing a spatial precedent for how to address the past in building the future. The building is a unique space by international comparison, not only because it has transformed the penal site, but because it integrates artworks into the fabric of the architecture and houses a large visual art collection developed by and for the Court. These artworks draw attention to individual, collective, and time-based narratives which play a role in a shaping the larger ‘unity in diversity’ narrative at the Court, understood as a new kind of ‘visual jurisprudence’ which, in such close proximity to the Court, inhabits a unique position where the assumptions of justice and what it means to uphold the Constitution in a ‘new’ South Africa can be probed.

Eliza Garnsay is a PhD candidate in International Relations at the University of Cambridge, where her research focuses on transitional justice and art in ‘post-apartheid’ South Africa.

To register: