Originally published in 1981, this book provides a detailed account of the emergence of the children’s rights movement, and analyses the concept of a right. It considers the justifications which may be sought when rights are claimed. Particular attention is given to the problem which arises when different rights are seen to be in conflict with each other or with other kinds of moral consideration. These arguments are then examined with regard to such special features of children as their incomplete but developing rationality and their material dependence on adults.
Part 1: The Claim That Children Have Rights 1. The children’s Rights Movement Part 2: What is a Right? 2. Three Traditional Theories of Rights 3. Rights and Other Forms of Moral Language Part 3: The Justification of Different Kinds of Rights Claims 4. Positive Rights and Moral Rights 5. Rights of Freedom in the Sense of Liberties 6. Claim Rights of Freedom and Non-Interference 7. Rights of Participation 8. Special Rights 9. Welfare Rights Part 4: The Rights of Children 10. Rights and the Concept of Childhood 11. The Lega Rights of Children 12. Children’s Rights of Freedom in the Sense of Liberties 13. Children’s Claim Rights of Freedom 14. Children’s Rights of Participation 15. Children and Special Rights 16. Children’s Welfare Rights and the Right to Education 17. Children’s Rights and the Children’s Rights Controversy