Since the end of the Cold War, the idea of human rights has been made into a justification for intervention by the world's leading economic and military powers—above all, the United States—in countries that are vulnerable to their attacks. The criteria for such intervention have become more arbitrary and self-serving, and their form more destructive, from Yugoslavia to Afghanistan to Iraq. Until the U.S. invasion of Iraq, the large parts of the left was often complicit in this ideology of intervention—discovering new “Hitlers” as the need arose, and denouncing antiwar arguments as appeasement on the model of Munich in 1938. Jean Bricmont’s Humanitarian Imperialism is both a historical account of this development and a powerful political and moral critique. It seeks to restore the critique of imperialism to its rightful place in the defense of human rights. It describes the leading role of the United States in initiating military and other interventions, but also on the obvious support given to it by European powers and NATO. It outlines an alternative approach to the question of human rights, based on the genuine recognition of the equal rights of people in poor and wealthy countries. Timely, topical, and rigorously argued, Jean Bricmont’s book establishes a firm basis for resistance to global war with no end in sight.
A Reappraisal of their Cultural-Political Critiques and their Imperialistic Use
Author: Fidèle Ingiyimbere
This book develops a philosophical conception of human rights that responds satisfactorily to the challenges raised by cultural and political critics of human rights, who contend that the contemporary human rights movement is promoting an imperialist ideology, and that the humanitarian intervention for protecting human rights is a neo-colonialism. These claims affect the normativity and effectiveness of human rights; that is why they have to be taken seriously. At the same time, the same philosophical account dismisses the imperialist crusaders who support the imperialistic use of human rights by the West to advance liberal culture. Thus, after elaborating and exposing these criticisms, the book confronts them to the human rights theories of John Rawls and Jürgen Habermas, in order to see whether they can be addressed. Unfortunately, they are not. Therefore, having shown that these two philosophical accounts of human rights do not respond convincingly to those the postcolonial challenges, the book provides an alternative conception that draws the understanding of human rights from local practices. It is a multilayer conception which is not centered on state, but rather integrates it in a larger web of actors involved in shaping the practice and meaning of human rights. Confronted to the challenges, this new conception offers a promising way for addressing them satisfactorily, and it even sheds new light to the classical questions of universality of human rights, as well as the tension between universalism and relativism.
What if human rights were used to oppress or even harm the very populations they were intended to protect? In The HUman Right to Dominate, Nicola Perugini and Neve Gordon challenge readers to reconsider everything that they think they know about human rights, arguing against the popular assumption that increased human rights lead to a greater degree of freedom. The book explores the subjective and politicized nature of human rights in the context of the Israel/Palestine conflict, demonstrating instances in which human rights can be used as a tool for oppression and illustrating the ways that human rights can be interpreted to justify colonialism, warfare, and even lethal violence again civilians. -- cover
To mark the 20th Anniversary of Voluntas: International Journal of Voluntary and Nonprofit Organizations the editor has compiled a comprehensive overview of contemporary debates in third sector scholarship, comprised of all original research by leaders in the field. The volume will offer a critical review of the central and innovative themes that have come to form the core of third sector debate and research with an international focus. The first global compendium of third sector research, this volume provides a international, multi-disciplinary, and state-of-the-art overview of the field. The contributions not only examine and review the existing scholarship, but introduce new perspectives and thinking on the third sector—especially in terms of future implications around the world. Topics covered include: -History and Development of the Field -New Trends in Volunteering and Philanthropy -Volunteering and Participation in Developing Countries -Leadership and Governance -Corporate Responsibility -Social Capital -Global Civil Society This seminal volume provides a broad and comprehensive look at the field of Third Sector Research, of primary interest to researchers in political science, sociology, development studies, and nonprofit leadership programs.
The Geopolitics of De-Democratisation and Insecurity
Author: E. Paul
Category: Political Science
This book explores Australia's role as a US client state and the subsequent consequences for Australian democracy. Examining whether neoliberal and neoconservative interests have hijacked democracy in Australia, Paul questions whether further de-democratisation will advance US economic and military interests.
"This is the third, significantly expanded and revised, edition of this seminal text. Incorporating additional contemporary topics, including mental health of refugees, trauma and psychosocial approaches, this text offers an illuminating account of mental health and mental disorder seen cross-culturally and internationally"--Provided by publisher.
In 1996, Alan Sokal, a Professor of Physics at New York University, wrote a paper for the cultural-studies journal iSocial Text/i, entitled: i'Transgressing the Boundaries: Towards a transformative hermeneutics of quantum gravity'/i. It was reviewed, accepted and published. Sokal immediately confessed that the whole article was a hoax - a cunningly worded paper designed to expose and parody the style of extreme postmodernist criticism of science. The story became front-page news around theworld and triggered fierce and wide-ranging controversy. Sokal is one of the most powerful voices in the continuing debate about the status of evidence-based knowledge. In iBeyond the Hoax/i he turns his attention to a new set of targets - pseudo-science, religion, and misinformation in public life. 'Whether my targets are the postmodernists of the left, the fundamentalists of the right, or the muddle-headed of all political and apolitical stripes, the bottom line is that clear thinking, combined with a respect for evidence, are of the utmost importance to the survival of the human race in the twenty-first century.' The book also includes a hugely illuminating annotated text of the Hoax itself, and a reflection on the furore it provoked.
The development and enforcement of human rights norms has become a central feature of the foreign policy of leading governments and international institutions. This collection brings together fields as diverse as political theory, peace studies, development policy, international law and media studies, to present an original and tightly argued critique of current trends. Dealing with a range of issues concerning the implication of human rights approaches for humanitarian aid, state sovereignty, international law, democracy and political autonomy, Rethinking Human Rights questions whether human rights approaches satisfy the progressive claims to be made on their behalf.