There is a woeful neglect of the current United Nations in the academic and policy literatures, and so it is unsurprising that an examination of that multilateral structure before 1945 shows an even more egregious absence of analytical attention. Such ignorance conveniently ignores the forgotten genius of 1942–1945, namely in the wide substantive and geographic relevance of multilateralism during the World War II and in the foundations for the contemporary world order. The wartime and immediate post-war United Nations was not simply dictated by the US State Department, Whitehall, and the foreign ministries of the West—even a generation before decolonisation had proceeded apace and two-thirds of UN member states moved into the limelight as erstwhile colonies. These essays interrogate the extent to which anti-colonialists and other nationalists resisting imperial rule embraced the promise of a rule-based world order as a normatively and operationally valuable projection in 1945. They critically review the worlds of 1945 and 2015, of then and now, to determine the role of continuity and change, of the continuing bases for compromise and for the clashes between the Global South and North. This book was previously published as a special issue of Third World Quarterly.
The UN and the Global South, 1945 and 2015: past as prelude?
Thomas G. Weiss and Pallavi Roy
PART 1. IDEAS AND SHIFTING POWER RELATIONS
1. Idea-shift: how ideas from the rest are reshaping global order
2. Emerging powers and the creation of the UN: three ships of Theseus
Adriana Erthal Abdenur
PART 2. INTERNATIONAL PEACE AND SECURITY
3. The revolt against the West: intervention and sovereignty
4. The South and disarmament at the UN
5. Arab agency and the UN project: the League of Arab States between universality and regionalism
Mohammad-Mahmoud Ould Mohamedou
PART THREE. HUMAN RIGHTS AND DEVELOPMENT
6. Normative human rights cascades, North and South
Bertrand G. Ramcharan
7. Managing the global commons: common good or common sink?
8. Developing countries and the right to development: a retrospective and prospective African view
9. Economic growth, the UN and the Global South: an unfulfilled promise
THIRDWORLDS will focus on the political economy, development and cultures of those parts of the world that have experienced the most political, social, and economic upheaval, and which have faced the greatest challenges of the postcolonial world under globalisation: poverty, displacement and diaspora, environmental degradation, human and civil rights abuses, war, hunger, and disease.
THIRDWORLDS serves as a signifier of oppositional emerging economies and cultures ranging from Africa, Asia, Latin America, Middle East, and even those ‘Souths’ within a larger perceived North, such as the U.S. South and Mediterranean Europe. The study of these otherwise disparate and discontinuous areas, known collectively as the Global South, demonstrates that as globalisation pervades the planet, the south, as a synonym for subalterity, also transcends geographical and ideological frontiers.