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Philosophical foundations of human rights

Handbook of Human Rights

Authored by
Andrew Fagan

Print publication date: September 2011
Online publication date: February 2012

This chapter presents and analyzes philosophical contributions to the theory and practice of human rights. More specifically, I will focus on attempts    Read more...
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A critique of positive rights

Handbook of Human Rights

Authored by
Tibor R. Machan

Print publication date: September 2011
Online publication date: February 2012

A very powerful and influential idea that has been in circulation for nearly two centuries and that challenges fully free society, the kind envisioned    Read more...
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Nonsense on stilts

Handbook of Human Rights

Authored by
Roger Scruton

Print publication date: September 2011
Online publication date: February 2012

The idea that there are universal human rights was expressed by its early defenders – notably by John Locke in his Second Treatise of Government – in    Read more...
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A communitarian critique of human rights

Handbook of Human Rights

Authored by
Amitai Etzioni

Print publication date: September 2011
Online publication date: February 2012

Communitarianism is a rather small philosophical school. Communitarians share the view that liberalism (in the political science sense of the term), e    Read more...
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What are human rights?

Handbook of Human Rights

Authored by
Marie-Bénédicte Dembour

Print publication date: September 2011
Online publication date: February 2012

Different people hold different concepts of human rights. This proposition might initially appear somewhat at odds with the commonly heard assertion t    Read more...
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Social suffering and human rights

Handbook of Human Rights

Authored by
Iain Wilkinson

Print publication date: September 2011
Online publication date: February 2012

In recent years, the concept of “social suffering” has been widely adopted in social science as a means to refer us to lived experiences of pain, dama    Read more...
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Human rights as cultural practices

Handbook of Human Rights

Authored by
Fuyuki Kurasawa

Print publication date: September 2011
Online publication date: February 2012

Discussions of human rights in the social sciences today are dominated by a formalist approach that understands these rights as legally institutionali    Read more...
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Human rights as status relations

Handbook of Human Rights

Authored by
Murray, Jr. Milner

Print publication date: September 2011
Online publication date: February 2012

The development of the notion of human rights and the creation of social institutions to articulate and defend such rights is one of the most striking    Read more...
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Becoming irrelevant

Handbook of Human Rights

Authored by
Mark Goodale

Print publication date: September 2011
Online publication date: February 2012

It is necessary to examine the curious history of anthropology's ambivalent relationship to human rights for at least two reasons. First, this history    Read more...
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Economics and human rights

Handbook of Human Rights

Authored by
Lorenz Blume

Print publication date: September 2011
Online publication date: February 2012

Historically, economists have been rather reluctant to deal with human rights. Jeremy Bentham (1748–1832), as a leading proponent of utilitarianism, f    Read more...
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