The prohibition of torture is usually couched in absolute and universal terms. But how do these terms play out in contexts where the state has either limited or disparate reach? This chapter uses the concept of ‘state fragility’ to provide a critical reflection on some of the key issues associated with the prevention of torture. Many of the challenges of eradicating torture in ‘fragile’ states can also be found in states with apparently greater respect for the rule of law and well established forms of institutional stability, but looking at these issues through the lens of state fragility can open up new perspectives. In particular, it can help us pay attention to the role of informal processes and inequality and help push back against any assumption that the eradication of torture is straightforwardly linked to the growth of democracy and the rule of law.
|Title of host publication||Research Handbook on Torture : Legal and Medical Perspectives on Prohibition and Prevention|
|Number of pages||17|
|Publisher||Edward Elgar Publishing|
|Publication status||Published - 2020|
|Series||Research Handbooks in Human Rights|