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Friday, November 24, 2017

CJC Seminar - Professor Carolyn Hoyle, University of Oxford
Room S2.09 Law School, Social Sciences Building

'Capital Punishment at the intersections of discrimination and disadvantage: the plight of foreign nationals'

Abstract: While academic research has demonstrated racial discrimination in the administration of the death penalty in the US, there has been much less attention paid to other jurisdictions and other sites of discrimination, particularly the role of citizenship. Focusing on under-researched countries in the Gulf States and Asia, this talk will address this lacuna. Drawing on evidence of disadvantage along racial and religious grounds, it will argue that in an era of globalisation and increased migration, our understanding of discrimination is partial without consideration of how citizenship intersects with other sites of disadvantaged - socioeconomic, religious, and racial.

Having demonstrated that states produce and compound disadvantage against minorities, particularly noncitizens, the focus of the talk will move to attempts to ameliorate disadvantage for foreign nationals. It will look first at the international obligation of states under the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, showing that this tends not to be honoured in those jurisdictions that make the most use of the death penalty. Finally, it will consider efforts by certain governments and human rights NGOs to agitate for change for ‘their’ citizens abroad, suggesting that better protections may ensue from states’ efforts to protect their own citizens overseas, rather than relying on governments to protect other nations’ citizens.