Human Rights: A Primer breaks new ground in clarifying for undergraduates the international significance of human rights. This new edition highlights current and recent developments, using themes familiar to undergraduates. For example, Americans are increasingly aware of the growing disparities in economic well-being. It is indeed a crisis that is global and national. Because this book focuses on globalization and human rights as intertwined, readers will gain a comprehensive understanding of the role of neoliberal capitalism in undermining human rights (dignity, security, and well-being). Major works by Thomas Piketty and Joseph Stiglitz are discussed, along with recent upheavals in Greece, and the rising tide of refugees in Europe and North America.
Furthermore, powerful forces that will increasingly test global solidarity and the future of the planet relate to the extent that countries and peoples cooperate in combating global warming and promoting sustainable development goals (SDGs). Key dates for both these issues occurred in the second half of 2015 – the UN Sustainable Development Summit in September and the Paris Climate Conference (COP21) in December. The significance of both conferences for human rights is discussed in this new edition.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1 – The Logic of Human Rights
Chapter 2 – The Human Rights Framework
Chapter 3 – In Defense of Society
Chapter 4 – Recognition: Culture and Ethics
Chapter 5 – Economic Myths, Realities, and Possibilities
Chapter 6 – The Equality Project
Chapter 7 – Humanitarian Crimes and Human Rights Violations
Chapter 8 – Solidarities
Chapter 9 – Democracy
Chapter 10 – Sustainable Development, Global Climate Change & Human Rights
Judith Blau is Professor Emerita at the University of North Carolina–Chapel Hill, retiring in 2014 after a teaching career that spanned 45 years. In 2012 she was awarded the Distinguished Career Award by the American Sociological Association. She is past president of the Southern Sociological Society, and former editor of Social Forces and of Societies without Borders. Her books include the 1st edition of the Primer; Sociology and Human Rights (2011); The World and U.S. Social Forums (2009); The Leading Rogue State (2008); Freedoms and Solidarities (2007); Public Sociology Reader (2006); Human Rights: Beyond the Liberal Vision (2005); Blackwell Companion to Sociology (2004); and Race in the Schools (2003). She continues to teach at the Open University of Wellfleet while living on Cape Cod and serves on the Barnstable Human Rights Commission.
Louis Edgar Esparza is Assistant Professor of Sociology and Latin American Studies at California State University at Los Angeles. His work focuses on grassroots social movements, their organizations and their strategies. Louis has been a Visiting Scholar at both Sophia University and Chuo University in Tokyo, an affiliated researcher at the Luis Angel Arango Library in Bogota, and Lecturer at the Josef Korbel School of International Studies. His research has appeared in Sociological Forum, Contemporary Justice Review, Environment & Society, Qualitative Sociology, and Societies Without Borders. His essays have appeared in The Progressive & In These Times.
“Blau and Moncada have written a great book unlike any other in the human rights field. It combines a devastating critique of neoliberalism with sociologically grounded scholarly advocacy of a people-centered future for human rights on a global scale. As such, it both persuades and inspires.”
—Richard Falk, University of California–Santa Barbara
“Human Rights: A Primer provides a compelling and timely introduction to the subject of globalization’s nefarious impact on human rights. Drawing on an encompassing and indivisible human rights framework, Blau and Moncada passionately appeal for solidarity at the local, national, and international levels.”
—Micheline Ishay, author of The History of Human Rights From Ancient Times to the Globalization Era (2004, 2008)