Amietta, SA (2019) Everyday justice at the courthouse? Governing lay participation in Argentina's criminal trials. In: Everyday Justice Law, Ethnography, Injustice. Cambridge University Press, 161 - 181. ISBN 9781108487214

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Lay participation in state judicial procedures has been championed, in Argentina and elsewhere, as embodying new ways of making justice – imbued with the experiences and sentiments of ordinary people and carrying into courthouses the quotidien’s romance of commonsensical authenticity and candidness. Research on law and the everyday, however, has paid little attention to ordinary citizens serving as jurors. The negative constitution of the everyday against state law situates jurors and their courthouse experiences at the other extreme of the continuum, delinked from everyday sites and practices. Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork conducted in the province of Córdoba, this chapter discusses ‘everyday justice’ from the empirical vantage point of the recent incorporation of lay decision-makers to the historically professional-only Argentine criminal justice system. The discussion follows jurors as they enter courthouses and as multiple authorities attempt to govern their presence, role, and status therein. The resulting enmeshment of formal and informal practices, I argue, reinforces jurors’ alterity vis-à-vis legal professionals, their postures, and modes of conduct, solidifying the implied ‘law vs. everyday’ divide. The chapter suggests that it may be fruitful to investigate this very divide not as ontologically given, but as an effect of multi-scalar governance attempts in discrete times and spaces.

Item Type: Book Section
Additional Information: The published version of this chapter and all relevant information related to it can be found in the book 'Everyday Justice Law, Ethnography, Injustice' and online at;
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare > HV1 Criminology
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare > HV7231 Criminal justice administration
K Law > K Law (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Social, Political and Global Studies
Depositing User: Symplectic
Date Deposited: 14 May 2021 13:55
Last Modified: 14 May 2021 13:55

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