Human Rights at the UN

Human Rights at the UN : The Political History of Universal Justice

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Human rights activists Roger Normand and Sarah Zaidi provide a broad political history of the emergence and development of the human rights movement in the 20th century through the crucible of the United Nations, focusing on the hopes and expectations, concrete power struggles, national rivalries, and bureaucratic politics that molded the international system of human rights law. The book emphasizes the period before and after the creation of the UN, when human rights ideas and proposals were shaped and transformed by the hard-edged realities of power politics and bureaucratic imperatives. It also analyzes the expansion of the human rights framework in response to demands for equitable development after decolonization and organized efforts by women, minorities, and other disadvantaged groups to secure international recognition of their rights.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 528 pages
  • 154.94 x 233.68 x 33.02mm | 725.74g
  • Bloomington, IN, United States
  • English
  • 0253219345
  • 9780253219343
  • 890,024

Table of contents

Series Editors' Foreword by Louis Emmerij, Richard Jolly, and Thomas G. Weiss
Foreword by Richard A. Falk
List of Abbreviations


Part 1. Human Rights Foundations in the First Half of the Twentieth Century
1. First Expressions of International Human Rights Ideas
2. The Decline of Human Rights between World Wars
3. The Human Rights Crusade in World War II
4. Human Rights Politics in the United Nations Charter

Part 2. UN Negotiations and the Modern Human Rights Framework
5. Laying the Human Rights Foundation
6. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights
7. The Covenants

Part 3. The Impact of Civil Society and Decolonization
8. The Human Rights of Special Groups
9. The Right to Development
10. Looking at Human Rights since 1990 and in the Future

About the Authors
About the United Nations Intellectual History Project
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Review quote

. . . Zaidi and Normand, both human rights advocates for many years, have prepared a quite critical, readable and highly interesting book. . . January 2009 * History.Transnational * Overall, this volume is extremely well written, organized, and researched, and provides a comprehensive understanding of the development of human rights at the United Nations. September, 2009 * H-NET Reviews Humanities & Social Sciences * International human rights law is based primarily on Western values and jurisprudence, but strong challenges from Asia and Africa have stimulated a lively debate over the issue. Thankfully, the current cultural gap has been bridged successfully by the team of Normand (Lahore Univ., Pakistan) and Zaidi (Center for Economic and Social Rights), who have produced an illuminating intellectual fusion. . . . Recommended.October 2008 -- A. Klinghoffer * Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, Camden * . . . Normand and Zaidi have presented a quite readable account of the history of the UN human rights system, mostly providing a perspective on power relations . . . .January 2009 -- Klaas Dykmann * H-Soz-u-Kult, H-Net *
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About Roger Normand

Roger Normand is Associate Professor of Law at Lahore University, Pakistan, and co-founder and former executive director of the Center for Economic and Social Rights. He has lectured widely on topics related to international politics and human rights. He lives in Lahore, Pakistan.

Sarah Zaidi is Coordinator of Research and Information Systems for Earthquakes-Pakistan and co-founder of the Center for Economic and Social Rights. She lives in Lahore, Pakistan.
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Rating details

9 ratings
3.88 out of 5 stars
5 11% (1)
4 67% (6)
3 22% (2)
2 0% (0)
1 0% (0)
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