Emmanuel Berger, Emilie Delivré (éd.), Popular Justice in Europe (18th-19th Centuries), Il Mulino - Duncker & Humblot, Bologna - Berlin, 2014.
“Popular justice” can be roughly defined as “the exercise of justice by the people”. The institutions and practices pertaining to this form of justice vary widely across time and geographical space. The 18th and 19th centuries constitute a key historical period for the transition to popular justice in Europe. On the one hand, many long-standing practices (“ducking”, “Rügegerichte”) were progressively called into question. On the other hand, the democratization of European societies and the progressive advent of political liberalism helped bring about the emergence of an institutionalized popular justice with the establishment of institutions such as the justice of the peace and the jury. The legitimacy of popular justice remained nonetheless weak due to the government’s fear of losing control and regal powers. Its establishment further depended on the degree of modernisation of the States, which for the most part remained firmly anchored in the Ancien Régime. Despite the importance of popular justice during the 18th and 19th centuries, scholars have largely ignored this field of research or have limited their study to a national perspective. The very definition of popular justice remains vague and requires further conceptual analyses. This book offers a comparative overview of the history of popular justice in France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Belgium, and England and sets the foundations for future research.
Emmanuel Berger and Émilie Delivré, Introduction
Part I. JUSTICES OF THE PEACE
Michael Broers, The «Juges de Paix» of Napoleonic Europe
Giuseppina D’Antuono, Popular Justice in Europe. The Justice of the Peace, a «popular» French Magistracy in the Kingdom of Naples
Part II. «JURÉS» AND LAYMEN
Emmanuel Berger, The Criminal Jury in England and France in the Late 18th Century. Historiographical Issues and Research Perspectives of Popular Justice
Bram Delbecke, «Le fruit du terroir?». The Debate on Trial by Jury in the United Kingdom of the Netherlands (1814-1831)
Martin Löhnig, Introducing the Participation of Laymen into the Judicial System of 19th-Century Germany. The Example of Bavaria
Part III. PRACTICES OF POPULAR JUSTICE
David Churchill and Peter King, «Left to the Mercy of the Mob». Ducking, Popular Justice, and the Magistrates in Britain (1750-1890)
Émilie Delivré, «Rügegerichte» as Popular Justice
Further Reading and Resources