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Latin American Experiences with Truth Commission Recommendations

Beyond Words Vol. II

Book | 1st edition 2022 | World | Elin Skaar, Eric Wiebelhaus-Brahm, Jemima Garcia-Godos

Truth commission recommendations are critical to their legacies, yet there is little research examining their fates. Based on fieldwork that is unprecedented in scope, this two-volume project provides the first systematic study of the formulation and implementation of the recommendations of 13 Latin American truth commissions.

Beyond Words Vol. I examines the variations in truth commission recommendations across 13 Latin American cases. Insights are provided regarding how the internal dynamics of truth commissions, as well as the political, social and economic context in which they operate, influence how recommendations are formulated. The authors then explore how the nature of these recommendations themselves, along with the aforementioned factors, influence which recommendations are actually implemented. The conclusion considers the findings' relevance for the crafting of future truth commission recommendations and reflects upon how the formulation and implementation of these recommendations shape the impact of truth commissions on societies emerging from periods of violence and repression.

Beyond Words Vol. II is a unique collection of 11 Latin American country studies covering all 13 formal truth commissions established in this region that submitted their final reports between 1984 and 2014. Based on qualitative original data and a common analytical framework, the main focus of each of the country chapters is threefold: (1) to provide a brief background to the truth commission(s); (2) to provide a detailed account of the formulation of the truth commission's recommendations; and (3) to analyze the implementation record of the recommendations, taking into account the actors and factors that have aided – or obstructed – the implementation process.

ELIN SKAAR (Research Professor, Chr. Michelsen Institute (CMI), Bergen, Norway) works in the intersection between law and politics and has published widely on transitional justice, human rights, and courts.

ERIC WIEBELHAUS-BRAHM (Associate Professor, School of Public Affairs, University of Arkansas at Little Rock) is the author of three books and over two dozen articles and book chapters on transitional justice, human rights, and peacebuilding.

JEMIMA GARCÍA-GODOS (Professor, Dept. Sociology and Human Geography, University of Oslo) is a human geographer working and publishing on transitional justice, human rights, victims’ rights, and state-society relations.

Technical info
More Information
Type of product Book
Format Hardback
EAN / ISSN 9781839701795 / 9781839702723
Series name Series on Transitional Justice
Weight 1060 g
Status Available
Number of pages xxiv + 524 p.
Access to exercice No
Publisher Intersentia
Language English
Publication Date Mar 31, 2022
Available on Jurisquare No
Available on Strada Belgique No
Available on Strada Europe No
Available on Strada Luxembourg No


  • Table of contents and preliminary pages
  • Introduction
  • Argentina’s Pioneering CONADEP: A Lasting Human Rights Agenda
  • Chile’s Rettig and Valech Commissions: Truth and Reparation under the Sign of Reconciliation
  • Uruguay’s Commission for Peace: An Unfulfilled Experience?
  • Paraguay’s Truth and Justice Commission: Recommending Justice without Political Change
  • Brazil’s National Truth Commission: Recommendations for a Pending Democratic Agenda
  • Ecuador’s Truth Commission: Official Support, Weak Compliance
  • Peru’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission: Recommending a Piecemeal Approach to Transitional Justice
  • El Salvador’s Truth Commission: Recommending Peace in Exchange for Justice
  • Guatemala’s Commission of Historical Clarification: The Memory of Silence or the Silence of Memory?
  • Haiti’s Truth and Justice Commission: Forgotten Recommendations, Living Demands
  • Panama’s Truth Commission Recommendations: Out of Sight, Out of Mind?
  • Conclusion