Dr Agata Fijalkowski, Reader

Dr Agata Fijalkowski


Originally from Chicago, Dr Agata Fijalkowski joined Leeds Law School as Reader in July 2019. Her research on the dispensation of justice in the aftermath of WW2 is distinctly interdisciplinary.

Agata completed her PhD in Law at the University of London. The result was From Old Times to New Europe (Ashgate 2010), which addresses the importance of constitutional guarantees for the independence of the judiciary in a country's success in its transition to a democracy: the case study was Poland.

Agata has published extensively in the field of transitional justice, which includes the co-edited volume Transitional Criminal Justice in Post-Dictatorial and Post-Conflict Societies (Intersentia 2015). Her writings are concerned with the (mal)administration of justice in former Communist states in the immediate post-WW2 period as well as its visual imagery. Her work on these issues draws on archival work (in Albania, Germany, Poland, Romania, and the UK). As Visiting Fellow at the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (IALS), Agata began compiling biographies of the individual members of the Polish legal team who were behind the domestic war crimes trials. See her most recent writing on the Polish lawyer/photographer Tadeusz Cyprian.

Agata's investigations continue to develop. As an Honorary Fellow at the prestigious Institute for Research in the Humanities at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Agata’s project will examine visual imagery in the war crimes trials in Poland. Agata also has been awarded the competitive EHRI/Conny Kristel Fellowship at the Netherlands Institute of War, Holocaust and Genocide Studies (NIOD), where she will investigate Dutch judicial responses to German crimes.

Agata is an enthusiastic and committed teacher. She has taught research-informed modules on topics that include European human rights law and on genocide and war crimes. Agata is a part-time MA student in Screenwriting at Leeds Beckett University. To date she has written several short film scripts and collaborated on a television drama series.

Current Teaching

  • PGDL/LLM Public Law (Module Leader)
  • PGDL/LLM Independent Legal Research Project 20 credit project (Module Leader)
  • Public Law
  • European Law

Research Interests

Agata is in the process of completing a monograph Law, Visual Culture, and the Show Trial, for GlassHouse Books (Routledge), in which she considers the way that the photographs of trials from the period 1944-1957 in Albania, East Germany and Poland 'speak legally'. The work's distinct novelty lies in unravelling the cultural, historical, and political implications of visualising law from the images themselves. Three vignettes from the book are available online.

In 2017, Agata organised an exhibition on the Albanian writer/political dissident Musine Kokalari (1917-1983) at the National Science and Media Museum in Bradford. The display included a short, 'arty' film ‘Musine Kokalari: An Unsung Hero (2017) (on IMDb). Using archival materials, the film dramatises Musine Kokalari reading her court statement at her 1946 trial, which was originally denied by the military tribunal.

For details on how Agata’s collaboration with Drama is developing see the SLSA blog from June 2021 on 'Adapting Testimonies of Survivors of Mass Atrocity Crimes for Performance: A Law and Drama Approach'.

In July 2022, she will be co-leading a workshop on 'Artefacts of Law: methods, lines of inquiry and ethics in archival research' at the Oñati International Institute for the Sociology of Law.

Dr Agata Fijalkowski, Reader

Ask Me About

  1. Law

Selected Outputs

  • Simic O (2016) An Introduction to Transitional Justice. Taylor & Francis.

  • eds. Fijalkowski A; Grosescu R (2015) Transitional Criminal Justice in Post-Dictatorial and Post-Conflict Societies. Intersentia Uitgevers N V.

  • Fijalkowski A (2010) From old times to new Europe: The Polish struggle for democracy and constitutionalism.

  • Fijalkowski A (In press) European Policy on the Death Penalty. In: Is the Death Penalty Dying?. Cambridge University Press, pp. 268-291.

  • Fijalkowski AA (2018) Historical Politics and Court Redress in the Baltic States. In: Horne C; Stan L ed. Transitional Justice and the Former Soviet Union: Reviewing the Past, Looking toward the Future. Cambridge University Press, pp. 216-240.

    View Repository Record

  • Grosescu R; Fijalkowski AA (2017) Retrospective justice and legal culture. In: Justice, Memory and redress in Romania: New Insights. Cambridge Scholars Publishing, pp. 100-123.

    View Repository Record

  • Fijalkowski AA (2016) Truth and Reconciliation Commissions. In: Simic O ed. An Introduction to Transitional Justice. Routledge, pp. 91-112.

    View Repository Record

  • Fijalkowski AA (2016) Amnesty. In: Simic O ed. An Introduction to Transitional Justice. Routledge, pp. 113-136.

    View Repository Record