Derechos Humanos desde una Perspectiva Tercermundista
Nuevo Libro, editado por José Manuel Barreto.
Human Rights from a Third World Perspective: Critique, History and International Law
Editor: José-Manuel Barreto
Date Of Publication: Mar 2013
Globalization, interdisciplinarity, and the critique of the Eurocentric canon are transforming the theory and practice of human rights. This collection takes up the point of view of the colonized in order to unsettle and supplement the conventional understanding of human rights. Putting together insights coming from Decolonial Thinking, the Third World Approach to International Law (TWAIL), Radical Black Theory and Subaltern Studies, the authors construct a new history and theory of human rights, and a more comprehensive understanding of international human rights law in the background of modern colonialism and the struggle for global justice. An exercise of dialogical and interdisciplinary thinking, this collection of articles by leading scholars puts into conversation important areas of research on human rights, namely philosophy or theory of human rights, history, and constitutional and international law. This book combines critical consciousness and moral sensibility, and offers methods of interpretation or hermeneutical strategies to advance the project of decolonizing human rights, a veritable tool-box to create new Third-World discourses of human rights.
José-Manuel Barreto, PhD, is currently a Visiting Fellow at the Unit for Global Justice, Goldsmiths College, University of London. His research gravitates around the history and theory of human rights in the context of modern imperialism and colonial genocide, and one of his interests is to retrieve the Third-World tradition of human rights. He has published On Rights, Duties and Guarantees (Colombian Commission of Jurists, 1998) and his writing has appeared in works such as Critical Legal Theory (Routledge, 2011) and Critical International Law: Post-Realism, Post-Colonialism, and Transnationalism (Oxford University Press, 2012).
“The history of human rights is a subject that has been receiving a great deal of attention. Nevertheless, what is curious about some of this work is its provincial approach to an inherently cosmopolitan subject matter. This superb collection helps address the resulting problem, with outstanding essays that provide different accounts of the complex roles of the Third World and Third World thinkers in the history and development of international human rights law. It is an indispensable volume for anyone seeking to develop a global vision of international human rights law.”
– Tony Anghie, Samuel D. Thurman Professor of Law, University of Utah; author of Imperialism, Sovereignty and the Making of International Law
“An extraordinarily rich and compendious volume, a kind of post-colonial ‘book of hours’ for human rights. The contributors’ diverse critical perspectives – historical, philosophical, cultural, aesthetic, literary as well as juridical – together accomplish a polychromatic retelling of human rights history and reimagining of human rights discourse, and each contribution is a textured illumination in its own right.”
– Scott Newton, Lecturer in Laws, and Member of the Centre for the Study of Colonialism, Empire and International Law, SOAS, University of London
“For too long human rights have arguably remained ambivalent instruments for the prevention and denunciation of genocides, violence and abuses to legal subjects, particularly at the heart of Western societies, while also becoming efficient tools in advancing cultural imposition and delegitimizing progressive struggles with alternative grammars of democracy. Instead of naively celebrating human rights, or simply dismissing them as purely European constructs or as liberal tools to prevent radical change, the contributors in this volume seek to identify alternative genealogies of and sources for thinking and rethinking human rights, while also providing new critical insights into standard human rights discourse. Here, we see a picture of what [it] is to think of human rights from the Third World, including the Third World in the North. The book clarifies and potently restates the imperative of decolonizing human rights discourse, and in the process making it more useful for the urgent social struggles in the Third World and beyond. A must read for everyone interested in human rights, their legacy, and their relevance for today.”
– Nelson Maldonado-Torres, Associate Professor, University of California, Berkeley; author of Against War: Views from the Underside of Modernity
“This eclectic collection of new and previously published essays provides a welcome counterbalance to the individualism and Eurocentrism that characterize much of the writing on the history of human rights. Human rights are often seen as primarily designed to protect individual liberty from interference by state authorities. But in the counter-narratives found here, the history of human rights is also portrayed as the struggle of peoples against colonial domination, of women against patriarchy, of Africans and Asians against racism, and of the poor against economic exploitation. This volume should finally lay to rest the notion that human rights are a form of western cultural imperialism imposed by the metropolitan powers on the periphery.
“These essays demonstrate that from the earliest expressions of humanism in the Sixteenth century, by dissidents such as Bartolomé de las Casas, to contemporary Southern authors such as Upendra Baxi, the discourse of human rights has always been a locus of popular struggle against oppression by privileged elites.”
– Morton Emanuel Winston, Professor of Philosophy, The College of New Jersey; Former Chairman of the Board of Directors of Amnesty International USA
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