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Supreme Courts Under Nazi Occupation

340 pages
Amsterdam University Press
This is the first extensive treatment of leading judicial institutions under Nazi rule in WWII. It focusses on all democratic countries under German occupation, and provides the details for answering questions like: how can law serve as an instrument of defence against an oppressive regime? Are the courts always the guardians of democracy and rule of law? What role was there for international law? How did the courts deal with dismissals, new appointees, new courts, forced German ordinances versus national law? How did judges justify their actions, help citizens, appease the enemy, protest against injustice? Experts from all democracies that were occupied by the Nazis paint vivid pictures of oppression, collaboration, and resistance. The results are interpreted in a socio-legal framework introducing the concept of ‘moral hygiene’ to explain the clash between normative and descriptive approaches in public opinion and scholarship concerning officials’ behaviour in war-time.
Author Bio
Derk Venema is assistant professor at the Law Faculty of the Open University in the Netherlands. He has published on the Dutch judiciary in WWII and transitional justice theory, amongst other subjects. He teaches professional ethics at the Training Centre for the Judiciary SSR, and is an associated researcher at CegeSoma, Brussels. Mélanie Bost holds a PhD in contemporary history and is an associated researcher at CegeSoma and the Royal Military Academy (Brussels). Her research focuses on the exercise of justice during the two world wars, daily life in occupied Belgium in 1914-1918 and military intelligence. Martin Löhnig was Chair for Civil Law, Legal History and Canon Law at the University of Konstanz (2005-2008) and is now Chair for Civil Law, Legal History and Canon Law at the University of Regensburg. His research concerns Family Law, Succession Law, Comparative/European Legal History, and Legal Culture. Ditlev Tamm is a professor emeritus at the Faculty of Law, University of Copenhagen. As a lawyer and historian he has published books on Danish and European legal history, political history, and cultural history including literature and ballet. In 1984 he published a book on the role of Danish Courts during WWII and post-war transitionary justice. Clément Millon is a historian and jurist, and holds a PhD in law from the University of Lille and Frankfurt-am-Main. He is affiliated to the Catholic University of the Vendée (ICES). Marc Olivier Baruch was formerly a civil servant in the French Ministries of Education and Culture and in the Prime Minister’s office; since 2003 he has been directeur d’études at the École des hautes études en sciences sociales. He researches the political history of the civil service in contemporary France. Hans Petter Graver is a professor of private law affiliated with University of Oslo; his research concerns public law and legal theory. He is the author of Judges against Justice. On Judges when the Rule of Law is under Attack(2015) and Der Krieg der Richter. Die deutsche Besatzung 1940-1945 und der norwegische Rechtsstaat (2019). Françoise Muller holds a PhD in contemporary history. She wrote her doctoral thesis on the history of the Belgian Court of Cassation, from the perspective of the relations between the different constitutional powers. She is postdoctoral researcher at Université Catholique de Louvain. She is also Bachelor of Law and Bachelor of Political Science. Kirsten Peters studied history at the Université Libre de Bruxelles and Tourism at the Institut Roger Lambion. As a research assistant at the Université Saint Louis, she researched Belgian judges and lawyers under German occupation (1940-1944). She now works with the Permanent Representation of Germany to the EU. Jaromír Tauchen is associate professor at the Department of History of State and Law of the Faculty of Law, Masaryk University Brno. He researches German legal history, especially the Third Reich, and the history of Germans in the Czech lands. His publications include Labour and its Legal Regulation in the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia (1939-1945) (2016). Vincent Artuso is a historian specialised in the history of collaboration in occupied countries during WWII. He is currently working as a research fellow at the Centre for Contemporary and Digital History of the University of Luxembourg. Antonio Grilli is a professor of legal history at the Open University of Como/Rome, having previously served as an EC Lawyer in Brussels (2000-2018). He has published widely on justice during Fascism, including Between Revolt and Collaboration: Judges in Occupied Italy (1943-1945) (2017). He is currently writing a book on Mussolini’s special tribunal for the State defence.