The concept of 'human rights' as a universal goal is at the centre of the international stage. It is now a key part in discourse, treaties and in domestic jurisdictions. However, as this study shows, the debate around this development is actually about human rights law.
This text scrutinizes the extent to which legalization shapes the human rights ideal, and surveys its ethical, political and practical repercussions. How does the law influence what we think about rights? What more is there to such rights than their legal protection? These expert contributors approach these questions from a range of perspectives: political theory/moral theory, anthropology, sociology, international law, international politics and political science, to deliver a diversity of methodologies.
This book is essential reading for those wishing to develop a clear understanding of the relationship between human rights ideals and laws and for those working toward the fostering of a genuine human rights culture.
Table of Contents
Introduction: Human Rights Legalized - Defining, Interpreting, and Implementing an Ideal 1. Lost in Translation: The Human Rights Ideal and International Human Rights Law 2. The Law Cannot be Enough: Human Rights and the Limits of Legalism 3. Putting Law in its Place: An Interdisciplinary Evaluation of National Amnesty Laws 4. The Virtues of Legalization 5. Is the Legalization of Human Rights Really the Problem? Genocide in the Guatemalan Historical Clarification Commission 6. Revisioning the Role of Law in Women’s Human Rights Struggles 7. The Bureaucratic Gaze of International Human Rights Law 8. Veridictive Discourses, Shame and Judicialization in Pursuit of Freedom of Association Rights 9. From the Theory of Discovery to the Theory of Recognition of Indigenous Rights: Conventional International Law in Search of Homeopathy 10. The Politics of Reading Human Rights
Saladin Meckled-Garcia is Director of the MA in Human Rights at UCL. His main area of work is political theory and philosophy, concentrating on human rights and international justice. He has published work in the areas of international justice, human rights, toleration and neutrality, ethics and the market.
Basak Cali is a senior research fellow and lecturer in human rights at the School of Public Policy, UCL. She is engaged in research on human rights theory and law. Her current work includes research into the effects of local human rights organisations on domestic human rights debates, and how this is affected by international human rights agencies and organisations.