War crimes investigations and trials are fundamentally important processes: they legitimise international action against perpetrators; they determine how a post-conflict society is structured; and they inform the development of the international laws of war concerning prevention and intervention. They have been studied from various disciplinary perspectives, each of which has its drawbacks and limitations, as well as its specific points of focus. The subject is so complex that it leads inevitably to the crossing of disciplinary boundaries – from History into Law, from Social Psychology into International Relations – but as yet there is little systematic dialogue between these approaches. In short, numerous disciplines build upon each other’s works, but with little interaction and hence very limited understanding of their respective foundations.

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