Violence, Development, and Canada’s New Transnational Jurisprudence

in Conflict and Society
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Abstract

For decades, Canadian-based corporate development projects have been linked to acts of violence in countries all over the world. These acts include sexual violence, destruction of property, community displacement, the use of forced labor, and other forms of violence. While Canada has repeatedly failed to pass legislation holding Canadian-based corporations accountable for human rights abuses committed abroad, Canadian courts are increasingly asserting their jurisdiction over cases of development-related violence. Analyzing two ongoing court cases—Caal v. Hudbay, regarding sexual violence in Guatemala, and Araya v. Nevsun, regarding forced labor in Eritrea— this article examines the potential and limits of law to address the bureaucratic mechanisms and grounded experiences of corporate-development-related violence, and the changing relationship between states, corporations, law, and human rights in the modern global era.

Contributor Notes

ELIZA GUYOL-MEINRATH ECHEVERRY is a PhD candidate in cultural anthropology at the University of Tennessee (UT) and works as a paralegal at a Knoxville law firm. She specializes in the anthropology of disasters, human rights and development, legal anthropology, and conflict and peace studies with a special emphasis on genocide. Her dissertation research examines how transnational networks are used to provide legal aid to displaced communities. She is active in UT’s multidisciplinary Disasters, Displacement, and Human Rights Program (DDHR), serving as Graduate Co-chair for the 2015 DDHR Conference. Email: eguyolme@vols.utk.edu

Conflict and Society

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