Cultural Expertise and Litigation: Patterns, Conflicts, by Livia Holden

By Livia Holden

Cultural services and Litigation addresses the position of social scientists as a resource of specialist proof, and is a made of their reviews and observations of circumstances concerning litigants of South Asian starting place. what's intended in court docket by way of "culture," "custom" and "law"? How are those techniques understood by means of witnesses, advocates, judges and litigants? How a long way are cross-cultural understandings facilitated - or obscured - within the strategy? What techniques are followed? And which of them turn into winning in courtroom? How is cultural knowing – and false impression – produced in those conditions? and the way, additionally, do the choices in those situations not just replicate, yet influence, upon the legislation and the criminal strategy? Cultural services and Litigation addresses those questions, because it elicits the styles, conflicts and narratives that signify the criminal function of social scientists in various de facto plural settings – together with immigration and asylum legislation, relations legislations, citizenship legislations and felony legislations.

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172–94); Ballard’s alternation between colloquial and high pitched narrative and his deeply moving plea against culture blindness; and Menski’s irritation about the inadequacies of the British legal system in the management of ethnic diversity (p. 162). Our reflexivity is itself part of the context that we have analysed. For most contributors of this volume, it is at the same time method and object, because it was the only possible way to throw light on those steps of ‘talking expert’ that go unnoticed because they are not part of the formal procedure ‘according to the book’.

Although the premise seemed clear, its realization was not, and this was in itself significant to the complexity of the culture debate. Without dismissing the Geertzian notion of culture as webs of meanings (Geertz 1980), 8 Introduction this volume focuses on culture as legal argument, whether closely connected with the notion of truth in court (see Good 2007 and Bouillier, Vatuk and Holden in this volume), or as an integrant part of the legal narrative (see Good, Menski, Holden and Sbriccoli and Jacoviello in this volume), culture is rather apprehended as actant, in Bruno Latour’s terminology, of the legal discourse.

The third was a white female who is a prominent international human rights lawyer. One of her areas of specialization is the situation of Ahmadis in Pakistan. 36 The qualifications of one of the academic historians were also questioned. His (oral) testimony had been given only limited weight by the immigration judge, on the grounds that he was ‘not an expert in current Pakistani affairs’ and had ‘no independent information to corroborate’ the appellant’s claims. In general, however, it appears that hiring an expert is a good investment.

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