Thursday, June 23, 2022

Roberts on the Global Red Scare, 1913-1927

Christopher M. Roberts, Chinese University of Hong Kong Faculty of Law, has posted The Global Red Scare and the Anti-Worker Repressive Model, 1913-1927, which appears in the Cardozo Journal of International and Comparative Law:

This article considers the extensive repressive measures enacted around the world during and in the wake of the First World War. While repressive developments in the World War I and post-war periods have previously been examined in different national contexts, little scholarship has adopted a more global lens. To better organize and consider the relevant developments, this article develops a typology of six different categories of public order governance into which the majority of the repressive measures of the period may be classified: the passage of new laws; the development of new institutions; raids, arrests, prosecutions, and other judicial and administrative measures taken against suspected dissidents; direct suppression via the deployment of state force; the development of new ideological formations; and the creation and strengthening of parastatal organizations. Considering developments around the world during and in the aftermath of World War I with the help of this typology helps to make clear how extensive in both kind and scope the innovations and extensions of repressive public order governance in the period were. Global study of such developments helps to reveal, moreover, how little such measures were solely or even primarily concerned with wartime exigencies, and how much, in contrast, they were concerned with clamping down on labor unrest, socialist agitation, and anti-colonial resistance. The developments of the period are not only a historical curiosity; rather, they continue to inform key components of repressive governance in numerous states today. As such, more directly confronting and addressing the history of such laws is essential to achieving greater respect for human rights in the contemporary world. 
--Dan Ernst