Wednesday, March 28, 2018

New book: Human Rights - Moral or Political?

Human Rights: Moral or Political?

Ed. by Adam Etinson

(Oxford University Press, 2018)

528 pages


Human rights have a rich life in the world around us. Political rhetoric pays tribute to them, or scorns them. Citizens and activists strive for them. The law enshrines them. And they live inside us too. For many of us, human rights form part of how we understand the world and what must (or must not) be done within it.
The ubiquity of human rights raises questions for the philosopher. If we want to understand these rights, where do we look? As a set of moral norms, it is tempting to think they can be grasped strictly from the armchair, say, by appeal to moral intuition. But what, if anything, can that kind of inquiry tell us about the human rights of contemporary politics, law, and civil society — that is, human rights as we ordinarily know them?
This volume brings together a distinguished, interdisciplinary group of scholars to address philosophical questions raised by the many facets of human rights: moral, legal, political, and historical. Its original chapters, each accompanied by a critical commentary, explore topics including: the purpose and methods of a philosophical theory of human rights; the "Orthodox-Political" debate; the relevance of history to philosophy; the relationship between human rights morality and law; and the value of political critiques of human rights.

Contents [Pre-view]

Introduction - Adam Etinson


1. Rights, History, Critique - Martti Koskenniemi
* Doing Without an Original: A Commentary on Martti Koskenniemi - Annabel Brett
2. Human Rights in Heaven - Samuel Moyn
* Philosophizing the Real World of Human Rights: A Reply to Samuel Moyn - John Tasioulas
* Genealogies of Human Rights: What's at Stake? - Jeffrey Flynn


3. Human Rights: A Critique of the Raz/Rawls Approach - Jeremy Waldron
* On Waldron's Critique of Raz on Human Rights - Joseph Raz
4. Assigning Functions to Human Rights: Methodological Issues in Human Rights Theory - James W. Nickel
* On Being Faithful to the 'Practice': A Response to Nickel - Adam Etinson
5. The Concept of Human Rights: The Broad View - Andrea Sangiovanni
* Human Rights in Context: A Comment on Sangiovanni - Rainer Forst


6. Taking International Legality Seriously: A Methodology for Human Rights - Allen Buchanan & Gopal Sreenivasan
* Instrumentalism and Human Rights: A Response to Buchanan and Sreenivasan - Erasmus Mayr
7. The Turn to Justification: On the Structure and Domain of Human Rights Practice - Mattias Kumm
* Human Rights and Justification: A Reply to Mattias Kumm - Samantha Besson
8. Appreciating the Margin of Appreciation - Andreas Føllesdal
* The Margin of Appreciation Revisited: A Response to Føllesdal - George Letsas


9: Dwelling in Possibility: Ideals, Aspirations, and Human Rights - Kimberley Brownlee
* In What Sense Should Respect for Human Rights Be Attainable? A Response to Brownlee - Rowan Cruft
10. The Nature of Violations of the Human Right to Subsistence - Elizabeth Ashford
* Remarks on Elizabeth Ashford's "The Nature of Violations of the Human Right to Subsistence" - Daniel Weinstock


11. Reflections on Human Rights and Power - Pablo Gilabert
* Reflections on Human Rights and Power: A Commentary - Elizabeth Frazer
12. The Hazards of Rescue - C.A.J. Coady
* The Politics of Humanitarian Morality: Reflections on "The Hazards of Rescue" - Vasuki Nesiah


13. Human Rights and Collective Self-Determination - Peter Jones
* Linking Self-Determination and Human Rights: A Comment on Peter Jones - Will Kymlicka
14. Human Rights, Membership, and Moral Responsibility in an Unjust World: The Case of Immigration Restrictions - Alex Levitov & Stephen Macedo
* The Slippery Slope of Statist Cosmopolitanism: A Response to Levitov and Macedo - Seyla Benhabib

Adam Etinson is a Lecturer in Philosophy at the University of St Andrews. 

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