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How Civil Society-based Truth Commissions Emerge: The Case of the Mississippi Truth Commission

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Abstract:

Using Event Structure Analysis, I examine how the Mississippi Truth Commission emerged in 2005 despite previous failed attempts. This paper argues that the truth commission emerged as a result of the convergence of local and global developments. By 2004 the global norm of “truth-telling” was firmly established, as was an international network of practitioners poised to support local truth-telling efforts. For a truth commission to emerge in Mississippi, however, the local environment had to be primed. The 40th anniversary commemoration of the “Mississippi Burning” murders and subsequent trial of Edgar Ray Killen, the mastermind behind the murders, helped shift opportunity structures across the state and mobilize local mnemonic entrepreneurs who would ultimately bring the Mississippi Truth Commission to fruition—at least to a point.
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Name: American Sociological Association Annual Meeting
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URL: http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p1118212_index.html
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MLA Citation:

Whitlinger, Claire. "How Civil Society-based Truth Commissions Emerge: The Case of the Mississippi Truth Commission" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association Annual Meeting, Washington State Convention Center, Seattle, WA, Aug 17, 2016 <Not Available>. 2017-11-01 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p1118212_index.html>

APA Citation:

Whitlinger, C. , 2016-08-17 "How Civil Society-based Truth Commissions Emerge: The Case of the Mississippi Truth Commission" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association Annual Meeting, Washington State Convention Center, Seattle, WA Online <APPLICATION/PDF>. 2017-11-01 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p1118212_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Review Method: Peer Reviewed
Abstract: Using Event Structure Analysis, I examine how the Mississippi Truth Commission emerged in 2005 despite previous failed attempts. This paper argues that the truth commission emerged as a result of the convergence of local and global developments. By 2004 the global norm of “truth-telling” was firmly established, as was an international network of practitioners poised to support local truth-telling efforts. For a truth commission to emerge in Mississippi, however, the local environment had to be primed. The 40th anniversary commemoration of the “Mississippi Burning” murders and subsequent trial of Edgar Ray Killen, the mastermind behind the murders, helped shift opportunity structures across the state and mobilize local mnemonic entrepreneurs who would ultimately bring the Mississippi Truth Commission to fruition—at least to a point.


 
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