Publications

Ezgi Yildiz (2019) “Extraterritoriality Reconsidered: Functional Boundaries as Repositories of Sovereignty and Jurisdiction,” in The Extraterritoriality of Law: History, Theory, Politics, eds. Daniel S. Margolies, Umut Özsu, Maïa Pal and Ntina Tzouvala (Routledge)

Explores how the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) has approached extraterritorially-committed violations of human rights. Traditionally, the ECtHR has been wary of extending the application of the European Convention of Human Rights beyond the territories of European countries. Examines the varyingly strict criteria that the ECtHR devised for ensuring accountability for human rights violations perpetrated beyond the territorial boundaries of European states.

Ezgi Yildiz (2018) “Understanding the Interpretative Evolution of the Norm Prohibiting Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment under the European Convention,” in Language and Legal Interpretation in International Law, eds. Anne Lise Kjær and Joanna Jemielniak (Oxford University Press)

Explains the changes in the understanding of the norm against torture and inhuman or degrading treatment. Although this norm embodies a core right that is well-settled under international law, its contents have evolved over time. Traces its evolution taking the European human rights system as a reference point.

Ezgi Yildiz (2016) “Norm in Flux: The Development of the Norm Against Torture under the European Convention from a Macro Perspective,” iCourts Working Paper Series No. 45

Gives an account on how the European Court of Human Rights’ jurisprudence has transformed the norm’s nature and scope. Analyzes the preparatory works and conducts large-scale content analysis on the relevant case law for the period between 1948 and 2006.

Ezgi Yildiz (2015) “Judicial Creativity in the Making: The Pilot Judgment Procedure a Decade After Its Inception,” Interdisciplinary Journal of Human Rights Law 8(1): 81-102

Investigates the procedure’s creation through the prism of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties. Analyzes its subsequent institutionalization and application in the case law. Illustrates the structural changes generated by the procedure, and examines the reasons undermining the effectiveness of its operation.  Read here.

Ezgi Yildiz (2014) Review of the European Court of Human Rights in the Post-Cold War Era: Universality in Transition by James Sweeney (Routledge, 2013), Swiss Political Science Review, 20(1): 179-181.

Reviews James Sweeney’s book, the European Court of Human Rights in the Post-Cold War Era: Universality in Transition.

Ezgi Yildiz, Between Forbearance and Audacity: The European Court Refashioning the Norm against Torture (In preparation)

What does ‘torture’ mean? Is it a single blow? Is it inflicting a life-threatening injury? Is it intimidating someone, or carrying out a mock execution? Is it deliberate psychological torment? As a form of cruel treatment or punishment, torture may be all of these and we keep defining its limits. Torture has been part of the repertoire of state-perpetrated violence for centuries, from medieval public executions to concentration camps of the Nazi regime, from Soviet gulags to torture sites like Abu Ghraib or Guantanamo Bay.

Nonetheless, the public perception of torture has changed over the last three centuries. Once thought to be “a legitimate judicial procedure to elicit the truth,” torture today is viewed as “the very worst infraction of the physical, psychological, and moral integrity of human beings.” Over the course of history, torture has been progressively placed outside of the bounds of permissible state behavior. The current international human rights regime – established after the Second World War – is the most effective mechanism ever created to reinforce this social and legal shift. The international legal regime now lays out how a “‘civilized state’ in the modern world” should act, prohibiting state use of violent treatment or punishment.

My book explains how the European Court of Human rights rulings from 1967 to the present day have increasingly limited the types of violent practices that states are permitted to employ. In so doing, it provides broader analysis of state violence in its different forms, looking not only at torture but also at inhuman and degrading treatment. This jurisprudential reflection, showing how the reach of the norm against torture has expanded, presents insights for reshaping anti-torture politics.