1st Edition

Why Human Rights Still Matter in Contemporary Global Affairs

Edited By Mahmood Monshipouri Copyright 2020
    396 Pages 5 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    396 Pages 5 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book elucidates why human rights still matter in contemporary global affairs, and what can lead to better protection of international human rights in a post-liberal order.

    It blends theoretical, empirical, and normative perspectives, while providing much-needed analysis in light of the perils of populism, authoritarianism, and toxic nationalism, as well as highlighting the hopes with which people around the world view human rights in the new millennium. Systematically combining theoretical perspectives from across the disciplines with numerous case studies, it demonstrates not only the complexities of the domestic conditions involved, but also the ways in which human dignity can be preserved and promoted during periods of rapid change and uncertainty. Finally, the book addresses the question of how to protect human rights in such a world in which the active promotion of democratic values and enforcement of human rights may not be necessarily aligned with evolving economic and geopolitical interests of many great and diverse powers on the global scene. As such, it is a timely intervention for human rights as a concept as it has been attacked and eroded by the instability in our world today.

    This book will be of key interest to scholars and students of human rights in politics, law, philosophy, sociology, and history and to humanitarian bodies, practitioners, and policy makers.

    List of Contributors


    1. Why Human Rights Still Matter in Contemporary World Affairs

    Mahmood Monshipouri

    Part I: Framing the Human Rights Discourse

    2. How Do Human Rights Matter?

    Michael Goodhart

    3. Broadening Human Rights: The Case for a Pluralistic Approach

    Hussein Banai and Anthony Tirado Chase

    4. Making Human Rights Meaningful Through Practice: Lessons from the Middle East

    Shadi Mokhtari

    5. Assessing Regional Human Rights Systems: from Convergence to Divergence

    Daniel J. Whelan and Andrew McWard

    Part II: Human Rights Practice: Legal and Moral Responsibility

    6. State Responsibility and International Law

    Mark Gibney

    7. Human Rights and Humanitarian Action Will Endure: The Case of International Committee of the Red Cross

    David P. Forsythe

    8. Denial and Debilitation: Environmental Rights and the Harm of Climate Change Denial

    Richard P. Hiskes

    9. Transitional Justice: From Accountability to Peace

    Mahmood Monshipouri and William V. Dunlap

    Part III: Protecting Economic Rights in a Globalizing World

    10. Labor Rights as Human Rights: Theoretical Foundations and Practical Implications

    Carol C. Gould

    11. The Trajectory of the Right to Food in Brazil: The Debate Between Means and Access

    Anthony Pahnke

    12. Social Movements, Development Policy, and Human Rights

    Shareen Hertel and Rajeshwari Majumdar

    13. Migrant Workers and Human Rights in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Countries

    Zahra Babar

    14. Human Rights and Inequality

    Rhoda E. Howard-Hassmann

    Part IV: Human Rights Challenges in a Fractured, Violent, and Intolerant World

    15. Threats to Freedom of the Press

    Andrei Richter

    16. Addressing Religious Intolerance in an Increasingly Illiberal World

    Barbara Ann Rieffer-Flanagan

    17. Neoliberalism and Women’s Rights

    Zehra F. Kabasakal Arat

    18. Climate Refugees, Forced Migrants, and the Syrian Crisis

    Mahmood Monshipouri

    Part V: The Way Forward

    19. The Resilience of Rights in a Post-Liberal World

    Alison Brysk

    Selected Bibliography



    Mahmood Monshipouri is Professor of International Relations at San Francisco State University and a Lecturer of Middle Eastern Politics at the Global Studies/International and Area Studies, University of California, Berkeley, USA.

    "An outstanding collection of expert essays on many enduring philosophical issues and contemporary human rights debates. Every chapter provides avenues for further reading, suggestions for future research and ideas for improving human rights protection." - David Cingranelli, Co-Director of the Human Rights Institute, Binghamton University, SUNY, USA

    "Are human rights outdated in our post-liberal world? This book brings together a diverse and distinguished set of scholars who argue for the continuing relevance of human rights in the struggle for social justice across the globe." - Jack Donnelly, Andrew Mellon Professor, Josef Korbel School of International Studies, University of Denver, USA

    "This timely, well-researched, and provocative book should be compulsory reading for everyone who cares about the future of human rights in a time of xenophobic nationalism, authoritarianism, and climate change denial." - Eric Stover, Faculty Director of the Human Rights Center, University of California, Berkeley, USA

    "Why Human Rights Still Matter in Contemporary Global Affairs inspires much-needed optimism about the future of human rights, despite challenges from many directions. The book’s diverse authors provide constructive proposals for how human rights advocates can effectively attack today’s most salient global human rights concerns, such as economic inequality, and environmental justice in a world confronted by climate change." - Lisa Sundstrom, Co-Director of the International Relations Program, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada