University of Pennsylvania Press

Pennsylvania Studies in Human Rights

Bert B. Lockwood, Jr., Series Editor

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Pennsylvania Studies in Human Rights

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Decolonization and the Evolution of International Human Rights

By Roland Burke

In the decades following the triumphant proclamation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948, the UN General Assembly was transformed by the arrival of newly independent states from Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. This diverse constellation of states introduced new ideas, methods, and priorities to the human rights program. Their influence was magnified by the highly effective nature of Asian, Arab, and African diplomacy in the UN human rights bodies and the sheer numerical superiority of the so-called Afro-Asian bloc. Owing to the nature of General Assembly procedure, the Third World states dominated the human rights agenda, and enthusiastic support for universal human rights was replaced by decades of authoritarianism and an increasingly strident rejection of the ideas laid out in the Universal Declaration.

In Decolonization and the Evolution of International Human Rights, Roland Burke explores the changing impact of decolonization on the UN human rights program. By recovering the contributions of those Asian, African, and Arab voices that joined the global rights debate, Burke demonstrates the central importance of Third World influence across the most pivotal battles in the UN, from those that secured the principle of universality, to the passage of the first binding human rights treaties, to the flawed but radical step of studying individual pleas for help. The very presence of so many independent voices from outside the West, and the often defensive nature of Western interventions, complicates the common presumption that the postwar human rights project was driven by Europe and the United States. Drawing on UN transcripts, archives, and the personal papers of key historical actors, this book challenges the notion that the international rights order was imposed on an unwilling and marginalized Third World. Far from being excluded, Asian, African, and Middle Eastern diplomats were powerful agents in both advancing and later obstructing the promotion of human rights.

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Democracy Without Justice in Spain

The Politics of Forgetting

By Omar G. Encarnacion

Spain is a notable exception to the implicit rules of late twentieth-century democratization: after the death of General Francisco Franco in 1975, the recovering nation began to consolidate democracy without enacting any of the mechanisms promoted by the international transitional justice movement. There were no political trials, no truth and reconciliation commissions, no formal attributions of blame, and no apologies. Instead, Spain's national parties negotiated the Pact of Forgetting, an agreement intended to place the bloody Spanish Civil War and the authoritarian excesses of the Franco dictatorship firmly in the past, not to be revisited even in conversation. Formalized by an amnesty law in 1977, this agreement defies the conventional wisdom that considers retribution and reconciliation vital to rebuilding a stable nation. Although not without its dark side, such as the silence imposed upon the victims of the Civil War and the dictatorship, the Pact of Forgetting allowed for the peaceful emergence of a democratic state, one with remarkable political stability and even a reputation as a trailblazer for the national rights and protections of minority groups.

Omar G. Encarnación examines the factors in Spanish political history that made the Pact of Forgetting possible, tracing the challenges and consequences of sustaining the agreement until its dramatic reversal with the 2007 Law of Historical Memory. The combined forces of a collective will to avoid revisiting the traumas of a difficult and painful past and the reliance on the reformed political institutions of the old regime to anchor the democratic transition created a climate conducive to forgetting. At the same time, the political movement to forget encouraged the embrace of a new national identity as a modern and democratic European state. Demonstrating the surprising compatibility of forgetting and democracy, Democratization Without Justice in Spain offers a crucial counterexample to the transitional justice movement. The refusal to confront and redress the past did not inhibit the rise of a successful democracy in Spain; on the contrary, by leaving the past behind, Spain chose not to repeat it.

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Economic Rights in Canada and the United States

Edited by Rhoda E. Howard-Hassmann and Claude E. Welch, Jr.

Readers in Western developed countries are most familiar with abuses of political and civil rights, but the international human rights regime also embraces a set of laws regarding economic rights. These rights include the right to work and to just and favorable working conditions; the right to join and form trade unions; the right to social security; specific rights for the family; the right to an adequate standard of living, including food, clothing, housing, and "the continuous improvement of living conditions"; and the right to "the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health."

In original essays by scholars senior and junior, this volume explains how these rights are realized—or violated—in Canada and the United States. Contributors analyze the philosophy, law, and politics of economic rights and discuss specific issues such as poverty, health care, and the rights of people with disabilities. Central to the problems of both countries are the human rights abuses evident in all contemporary capitalist societies. When the inequalities among citizens are not cushioned by a national commitment to economic rights, or when governments fail to maintain social safety nets for all citizens, economic rights are at risk.

Contributors consider the problem from the perspective of their own countries: Canada, the United States, and, for contrast, the Netherlands. They do so in order to explore whether their own countries fall short of meeting international standards of economic rights. They also address the criticism often made by non-Western scholars of human rights—that their Western colleagues preach human rights abroad without regard to the human rights flaws at home.

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Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights

A Legal Resource Guide

Edited by Scott Leckie and Anne Gallagher

In response to a growing global awareness of human poverty and the increasing potential of human rights law as a tool that can be used by the poor to achieve their basic rights, the international body of law, policy and relevant standards on economic, social, and cultural rights has expanded markedly in recent years. Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights: A Legal Resource Guide provides, for the first time, a comprehensive, consolidated source of most major international agreements recognizing economic, social and cultural rights.

Readers interested in workers' rights, trade union rights, the right to an adequate standard of living, the right to housing, the right to food, the right to health, the right to education, and the right to culture will find this book a vital source of information on the exact legal sources, definitions, and enforcement possibilities associated with these rights. The guide contains key treaties, declarations, general comments, interpretive texts, and charters.

Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights: A Legal Resource Guide is an indispensable reference work for all those working in the field of international human rights law. Lawyers, researchers, governmental civil servants, ministerial officials, NGO staff, United Nations and other international officials, aid agencies, community-based organizations, students, and others will find this consolidated source of materials on economic, social, and cultural rights a useful addition to any reference library.

Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights: A Legal Resource Guide is organized in an easy-to-use format and is accessible to both lawyers and nonlawyers. The inclusion of legal, policy, and explanatory standards on economic, social, and cultural rights will enable the reader to know not only the law on these rights but the actual meaning accorded these rights under the law.

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Educating for Human Dignity

Learning About Rights and Responsibilities

By Betty A. Reardon

Issues of universal human rights are critically important topics in education today. Educators, scholars, and activists urge schools to promote awareness and understanding of human rights in their curricula from the earliest levels.

Written by by Betty A. Reardon, one of the foremost scholars on human rights education for the primary and secondary levels, Educating for Human Dignity is designed for both teachers and teacher educators. It is the first resource offering both guidance and support materials for human rights education programs from kindergarten through high school. It opens possibilities for an holistic approach to human rights education that directly confronts the values issues raised by human rights problems in a context of global interrelationships.

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Everyday Occupations

Experiencing Militarism in South Asia and the Middle East

Edited by Kamala Visweswaran

In the twenty-first century, political conflict and militarization have come to constitute a global social condition rather than a political exception. Military occupation increasingly informs the politics of both democracies and dictatorships, capitalist and formerly socialist regimes, raising questions about its relationship to sovereignty and the nation-state form. Israel and India are two of the world's most powerful postwar democracies yet have long-standing military occupations. Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Turkey have passed through periods of military dictatorship, but democracy has yielded little for ethnic minorities who have been incorporated into their electoral process. Sri Lanka and Bangladesh (like India, Pakistan, and Turkey) have felt the imprint of socialism; declarations of peace after long periods of conflict in these countries have not improved the conditions of their minority or indigenous peoples but have, rather, resulted in "violent peace" and remilitarization. Indeed, the existence of standing troops and ongoing state violence against peoples struggling for self-determination in these regions suggests the expanding and everyday nature of military occupation. Such everydayness raises larger issues about the dominant place of the military in society and the social values surrounding militarism.

Everyday Occupations examines militarization from the standpoints of both occupier and occupied. With attention to gender, poetics, satire, and popular culture, contributors who have lived and worked in occupied areas in the Middle East and South Asia explore what kinds of society are foreclosed or made possible by militarism. The outcome is a powerful contribution to the ethnography of political violence.

Contributors: Nosheen Ali, Kabita Chakma, Richard Falk, Sandya Hewamanne, Mohamad Junaid, Rhoda Kanaaneh, Hisyar Ozsoy, Cheran Rudhramoorthy, Serap Ruken Sengul, Kamala Visweswaran.

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The Evolution of International Human Rights

Visions Seen

By Paul Gordon Lauren

This widely acclaimed and highly regarded book, used extensively by students, scholars, policymakers, and activists, now appears in a new third edition. Focusing on the theme of visions seen by those who dreamed of what might be, Lauren explores the dramatic transformation of a world patterned by centuries of human rights abuses into a global community that now boldly proclaims that the way governments treat their own people is a matter of international concern—and sets the goal of human rights "for all peoples and all nations." He reveals the truly universal nature of this movement, places contemporary events within their broader historical contexts, and explains the relationship between individual cases and larger issues of human rights with insight.

This new edition incorporates material from recently declassified documents and the most recent scholarship relating to the creation of the new Human Rights Council and its Universal Periodic Review, the International Criminal Court, the Responsibility to Protect (R2P), terrorism and torture, the impact of globalization and modern technology, and activists in NGOs devoted to human rights. It provides perceptive assessments of the process of change, the power of visions and visionaries, politics and political will, and the evolving meanings of sovereignty, security, and human rights themselves.

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Female Circumcision

Multicultural Perspectives

Edited by Rogaia Mustafa Abusharaf

Bolokoli, khifad, tahara, tahoor, qudiin, irua, bondo, kuruna, negekorsigin, and kene-kene are a few of the terms used in local African languages to denote a set of cultural practices collectively known as female circumcision. Practiced in many countries across Africa and Asia, this ritual is hotly debated. Supporters regard it as a central coming-of-age ritual that ensures chastity and promotes fertility. Human rights groups denounce the procedure as barbaric. It is estimated that between 100 million and 130 million girls and women today have undergone forms of this genital surgery.

Female Circumcision gathers together African activists to examine the issue within its various cultural and historical contexts, the debates on circumcision regarding African refugee and immigrant populations in the United States, and the human rights efforts to eradicate the practice. This work brings African women's voices into the discussion, foregrounds indigenous processes of social and cultural change, and demonstrates the manifold linkages between respect for women's bodily integrity, the empowerment of women, and democratic modes of economic development.

This volume does not focus narrowly on female circumcision as a set of ritualized surgeries sanctioned by society. Instead, the contributors explore a chain of connecting issues and processes through which the practice is being transformed in local and transnational contexts. The authors document shifts in local views to highlight processes of change and chronicle the efforts of diverse communities as agents in the process of cultural and social transformation.

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A Force Profonde

The Power, Politics, and Promise of Human Rights

Edited by Edward A. Kolodziej

Presenting detailed portraits by leading authorities of the politics of human rights across the major regions of the globe, A Force Profonde: The Power, Politics, and Promise of Human Rights reveals human rights to be a force as powerful as capitalist markets and technological innovation in shaping global governance. Human rights issues mobilize populations regardless of their national, ethnic, cultural, or religious differences. Yet progress in advancing human rights globally, as Edward A. Kolodziej and the other contributors to the volume contend, depends decisively on the local support and the efforts of the diverse and divided peoples of the world—a prerequisite that remains problematic in many parts of the globe.

A Force Profonde explores conceptions of human rights from Western as well as other major world traditions in an attempt to dispel the notion that tyranny, culture, and religion are the only challenges to human rights. Focusing on regional patterns of conflict, the authors point out that violations often have to do with disputes over class, social status, economic privilege, and personal power. In addition, they contend that conflicts over identity are more prevalent in the West than commonly thought. Sharply conflicting views are to be found between the European Union and the United States over issues like the death penalty. Splits within the West between rival Christian sects and between religious adherents and partisans of secularization are no less profound than those in other regions.

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Forging Rights in a New Democracy

Ukrainian Students Between Freedom and Justice

By Anna Fournier

The last two decades have been marked by momentous changes in forms of governance throughout the post-Soviet region. Ukraine's political system, like those of other formerly socialist states of Eastern Europe, has often been characterized as being "in transition," moving from a Soviet system to one more closely aligned with Western models. Anna Fournier challenges this view, investigating what is increasingly recognized as a critical aspect of contemporary global rights discourse: the active involvement of young people living in societies undergoing radical change. Fournier delineates a generation simultaneously embracing various ideological stances in an attempt to make sense of social conditions marked by the disjuncture between democratic ideals and the everyday realities of growing economic inequality.

Based on extensive fieldwork in public and private schools in the Ukrainian capital city of Kyiv, Forging Rights in a New Democracy explores high-school-aged students' understanding of rights and justice, and the ways they interpret and appropriate discourses of citizenship and civic values in the educational setting and beyond. Fournier's rich ethnographic account assesses the impact on the making of citizens of both formal and informal pedagogical practices, in schools and on the streets. Chronicling her subjects' encounters with state representatives and "violent entrepreneurs" as well as their involvement in peaceful protests alongside political activists, Fournier demonstrates the extent to which young people both reproduce and challenge the liberal discourse of rights in ways that illuminate the everyday paradoxes of market democracy. By tracking students' active participation in larger contests about the nature of liberty and entitlement in the context of redefined rights, her book provides insight into emergent configurations of citizenship in the New Europe.

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