“The Law as Means, Politics as Ends”: Communist Lawyers in the “Fight Against Repression” during the Cold War

By Vanessa Codaccioni

This paper seeks to examine, through the study of French Communist Party lawyers during the Cold War, the terms of entry in “communist cause lawyering,” as well as the theoretical and activist apprenticeship it required. It also aims at accounting, for the political and legal battles between the Party members and State agents through a study of sabotage cases. This particularly happened in the courtroom where Party lawyers implemented several strategies to politicize trials, the law, and repression.


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