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Human Rights: Moral or Political? - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Human Rights: Moral or Political?

Adam Etinson


This volume explores philosophical questions raised by the dual status of human rights as moral rights, on the one hand, and legally, politically, and historically practised rights, on the other. Its topics include: the relevance of the history of human rights to their philosophical comprehension (Part I); the “Orthodox–Political” debate (II); how to properly understand the relationship between human rights morality and law (III); how to balance the normative character of human rights—their description of an ideal world—with the requirement that they be feasible in the here and now (IV); the r ... More

Keywords: human rights, theory and practice, political realism, human rights law, philosophical methodology

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2018 Print ISBN-13: 9780198713258
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2018 DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198713258.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Adam Etinson, editor
University of St Andrews

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Front Matter


Adam Etinson

Part I The Relevance of History

1 Rights, History, Critique

Martti Koskenniemi

Part II The Orthodox–Political Debate

3 Human Rights

Jeremy Waldron

Part III Morality and Law

6 Taking International Legality Seriously

Allen Buchanan & Gopal Sreenivasan

Part IV Ideals and their Limits

9 Dwelling in Possibility

Kimberley Brownlee

Part V The Challenges of Politics

12 The Hazards of Rescue

C. A. J. Coady

Part VI Individuals, Borders, and Groups

End Matter