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Human Rights Futures
  • Cited by 10
  • Edited by Stephen Hopgood, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, Jack Snyder, Columbia University, New York, Leslie Vinjamuri, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London
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Book description

For the first time in one collected volume, mainstream and critical human rights scholars together examine the empirical and normative debates around the future of human rights. They ask what makes human rights effective, what strategies will enhance the chances of compliance, what blocks progress, and whether the hope for human rights is entirely misplaced in a rapidly transforming world. Human Rights Futures sees the world as at a crucial juncture. The project for globalizing rights will either continue to be embedded or will fall backward into a maelstrom of nationalist backlash, religious resurgence and faltering Western power. Each chapter talks directly to the others in an interactive dialogue, providing a theoretical and methodological framework for a clear research agenda for the next decade. Scholars, graduate students and practitioners of political science, history, sociology, law and development will find much to both challenge and provoke them in this innovative book.


'This fine book surveys what has been achieved, what social scientists have learned about those achievements, and several possible paths forward for human rights. It will be of interest to scholars, students, and citizens alike and should quickly establish itself as a standard work in the field. Excellent in every way!'

Jack Donnelly - University of Denver

'Human Rights Futures is a unique and timely book. Unique in that it enlists leading writers from cognate disciplines to address fundamental questions about the meaning and value of human rights as a political project. Timely in that the contestation played out by the contributors reflects the clash between advocates and defenders 'out there' in the social world. Protagonists from all sides will be informed and enlightened by reading this excellent book.'

Tim Dunne - University of Queensland

‘This outstanding book identifies and examines the countercurrents and undertows in international human rights. These norms both build and remake the terrain of global politics. The insightful contributions by leading scholars show persuasively that the owl of Minerva will continue to fly at dusk - be it dawn or nightfall.'

Peter J. Katzenstein - Walter S. Carpenter, Jr Professor of International Studies, Cornell University

'This timely collection dares to imagine the future for human rights in a world where liberal internationalism is under challenge from many corners. It features detailed evidence that the impact of human rights promotion remains pervasive, as well as arguments that question its power and lament the minimalist ambition that has underpinned it over the past half century. The book is essential reading for those who want to transcend both categorical dismissals and defenses to achieve a deeper understanding of human rights processes and outcomes, as well as the conditions that enable the ‘everyday success’ of human rights promotion in the twenty-first century.'

Jennifer Welsh - European University Institute, Florence

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