We open this issue with an interview with Baroness Hale of Richmond, who generously granted us some time on a bright afternoon in July to discuss the continued development of human rights in the UK as well as her opinion on the state of equality in the highest tiers of the judiciary. Her keen interest in the next generation of lawyers, and the challenges they face, goes some way to showing why she is an inspiration for so many, and we are very pleased to be able to have her here.
James Fisher continues in the vein of socio-legal studies with his article, ‘The Role of Morality in Cultural Defence Cases: Insights From a Dworkinian Analysis’. His analysis of the murky area where legal systems engage with moral questions related to contentious cultural practices among minority groups within Western society is a thoughtful one that sheds light on the ‘hidden morality’ at work in judicial reasoning.
In ‘Police Liability for Negligent Investigations: Unravelling the Blanket of Immunity’, Zoha Jamil examines the seemingly de facto immunity granted to the Police in actions for negligence resulting from poor investigations after Hill v Chief Constable of South Yorkshire. In arguing for a broader, more developed test in light of the Human Rights Act 1998, the article looks to recent ECtHR rulings and criticisms that the current test is so watertight as to potentially breach the right to a fair trial under Article 6.
With ‘Juridical Rape and a Courtroom Lack of Belief: A Wittgensteinian View on Consent’, Rossella Pisconti posits that alleged rape victims are unduly harassed by the process of trial and that current understandings of ‘consent’ create restrictive, unhelpful frameworks for the courts to use. Using Wittgensteinian’s extensive work on language, she stresses that while the removal of victims’ sexual history in evidence is key to improving outcomes in rape trials, the traditional rape ‘myth’ must also be challenged at a wider cultural level.
We conclude the issue with Agnieszka Szpak’s observations of the continued darkness troubling the notorious military base in the south of Cuba. ‘The Legal Status of the Guantanamo Bay Detainees - Ten Years Later’ considers how international humanitarian law affects the inmates, contending that implementation of existing law is capable of achieving the Obama administration’s desire to close the prison, which, of course, has yet to be realised.
As we draw the first volume of the Review to a close we are grateful to once again acknowledge the support of the School of Law, the faculty, and administrative staff, as well as many others whose support was instrumental to getting this issue published. We would like to express special thanks to Sir Terence Etherton who kindly agreed to become our patron, Wendy Lynwood and Peter Fitzpatrick who provided much practical guidance on refining our reviewing and copyediting processes, Jose Bellido who graciously nurtured a project that unfortunately fell through, and finally to the Editorial Board whose late nights and long efforts are continuing to build this publication into something to be proud of.
Cover Article: Rights, Constitution and Radical Democracy in Occupy Wall Street and Occupy London
Cover Image: Courtesy Andrew B Photography