A country boy goes to Geneva

My journey to becoming a member of the Appellate Body began in Itu, a small town in the countryside of the state of São Paulo, in Brazil, a former Portuguese colony – where I was born. Portuguese traditions remain alive in the activities of the Brazilian state, especially in the judicial branch. Tribunals and judges unconsciously act as if they were still the sovereign’s representatives, and install their courts in buildings that resemble real palaces. Lawyers and the general public address judges as ‘your excellency’, and when they appeal to the courts they do so as if the judges were granting them a favour, instead of securing a right that derives from the constitution or the law.

Related Topics: The WTO
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