The justice system and courts of law in the ghettos of Lithuania

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The legal systems established in the three main Jewish ghettos in Lithuania during World War Il demonstrate a prevalent wish to maintain a communal life based on laws, values, and moral restraint. The new systems had to function in the face of a conqueror who had turned human values upside down, and in the context of a surrounding population who had largely abandoned or brutalized their former neighbors. These new legal systems were created by former jurists who configured regulations suited to the realities of ghetto life. The attitude of the population was directly related to the degree of the courts' and judges' independence from the ghetto police and formal leadership: the more independent the court, the more it was respected.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)49-65
Number of pages17
JournalHolocaust and Genocide Studies
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1998


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