The Legend of St Yves is not widely known in Britain, even though he is the patron saint of lawyers (among other things). In this informative account, Bryan Gibson places St Yves – born Erwan Helouri – on a par with Robin Hood, Jessie James and Ned Kelly in terms of their appeal to various national psyches – and up there alongside Joan of Arc and Bernadette of Lourdes as regards his native France. But whilst conventional outlaws used bows, arrows, six-guns and bullets to ‘rob the rich to help the poor’, St Yves challenged the poverty and social inequality which he saw as the root of many a prosecution or claim via argument, debate, reason and consensus. At a time when bribery and corruption was rife, St Yves waged an historic struggle to enhance the fairness of court and other proceedings and their outcomes.
Hailing St Yves as an icon of justice, counselling, mediation and reform, Bryan Gibson explains why Erwan Helouri deserves to be better known, including for the values of decency, integrity and ethics that his approach to resolving conflict conveys. The result is not just a fascinating portrayal of the man but a work that will serve as an encouragement to anyone who believes that there are better ways of doing justice. Building on connections across time, place and elements of the supernatural, The Legend of St Yves: Law, Justice and Mediation also stands in its own right as an enlightening and compelling tale. A filip for all proponents of Restorative Justice – showing that such ideas have existed over time and place.
As Guardian columnist and legal commentator Marcel Berlin writes in the Foreword:
‘St Yves deserves to be far better known than he is, especially in the English-speaking world, and in Bryan Gibson he has found a worthy champion’.
Bryan Gibson is a barrister and former co-editor of Justice of the Peace. He has written many books on aspects of criminal justice.