This chapter summarizes the core human rights and social justice functions of libraries.
After reviewing how each chapter of this edited volume offers evidence of libraries’ clear contributions in the area of human rights and social justice, this chapter explores in greater detail how the current environment in which libraries operate impacts their ability to promote human rights and social justice.
In many communities, libraries are the only institution capable of fulfilling a wide array of social justice and human rights roles. As they seek to fulfill these roles, however, libraries face significant challenges related to the lack of emphasis on considerations of human rights and social justice within the pedagogy, research, and practice of our field.
This chapter serves as a call to action for library practitioners, educators, and researchers to better articulate the social justice and human rights roles of libraries to policy-makers, funders, politicians, and community members.
Ideas of health-related deservingness in theory and practise have largely been attached to humanitarian notions of compassion and care for vulnerable persons, in contrast…
Ideas of health-related deservingness in theory and practise have largely been attached to humanitarian notions of compassion and care for vulnerable persons, in contrast to rights-based approaches involving a moral-legal obligation to care based on universal citizenship principles. This paper aims to provide an alternative to these frames, seeking to explore ideas of a human rights-based deservingness framework to understand health care access and entitlement amongst precarious status persons in Canada.
Drawing from theoretical conceptualizations of deservingness, this paper aims to bring deservingness frameworks into the language of human rights discourses as these ideas relate to inequalities based on noncitizenship.
Deservingness frameworks have been used in public discourses to both perpetuate and diminish health-related inequalities around access and entitlement. Although, movements based on human rights have the potential to be co-opted and used to re-frame precarious status migrants as “undeserving”, movements driven by frames of human rights-based deservingness can subvert these dominant, negative discourses.
To date, deservingness theory has primarily been used to speak to issues relating to deservingness to welfare services. In relation to deservingness and precarious status migrants, much of the literature focuses on humanitarian notions of the “deserving” migrant. Health-related deservingness based on human rights has been under-theorized in the literature and the authors can learn from activist movements, precarious status migrants and health care providers that have taken on this approach to mobilize for rights based on being “human”.
This chapter focuses on the development of corporate human rights standards since the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, better known as the Earth…
This chapter focuses on the development of corporate human rights standards since the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, better known as the Earth Summit was held in Rio de Janeiro in 1992. One of the important agendas for this Summit was human rights (apart from the climate change issue). This chapter provides a critical evaluation of institutional change in human rights guidelines and associated corporate (non) accountability in relation to human rights in line with the RIO summit. Based on a review of the media reports, archival documents and a case study, we argue that while there are a number of international organisations working towards the creation of corporate accountability in relation to human rights, there is limited real change in corporate action when faced with no government regulation. A radical (reform-based) approach, such as mandatory monitoring (compliance audit) and disclosure requirements is necessary to ensure corporate accountability in relation to human rights.
What is the relationship between human rights and corruption? This question can take different forms, including moral, legal, socio-political and economic variants. This…
What is the relationship between human rights and corruption? This question can take different forms, including moral, legal, socio-political and economic variants. This paper focuses on two key moral questions, asking whether corruption can violate or impact on people’s natural rights (on the one hand) or human rights (on the other). In answer, I aim to establish a strong conceptual link between (a) corruption’s ‘abuse of entrusted power’; (b) the ‘arbitrary power’ targeted by natural rights theorists like John Locke and the broader republican tradition and (c) the ‘arbitrary interference’ with protected freedoms prohibited by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. I argue that the deep thematic links between systemic corruption and violations of human rights are stronger than have hitherto been recognized. In the twenty-first century, corruption should be recognized as a ‘standard threat’ (in Shue’s sense) to human flourishing and protected freedoms, vindicating the human right to freedom from systemic corruption.
A sociology of human rights is a modern challenge, and this study draws on the universalizing codification in the history of human rights documents from ancient societies to the present challenges of modern society. Power contradictions and conflicts are analyzed in the case study of historic inequalities and the modern deprivation of human rights of the People of Indian Origin in their diaspora in the modern world. Insider perspectives are posed to increase awareness and knowledge to the forming of community identity and to challenge others to study these complex social conditions. A public sociology is assumed in this chapter, derived from the author's public speech to further the development of a sociology of human rights, one that will reflect the complexity, universality, and inclusiveness protected by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Established methods and theories may be augmented by challenging their bases and working collaboratively to research contemporary human rights.
This chapter examines how international human rights law is shaping the politics of immigration. It argues that migrant human rights are neither conceptually nor…
This chapter examines how international human rights law is shaping the politics of immigration. It argues that migrant human rights are neither conceptually nor practically incompatible with an international order premised upon state territorial sovereignty, and that the specific aesthetics of the contemporary international human rights system, namely its formalistic and legalistic tendencies, has facilitated its integration with a realm of policymaking traditionally reserved to state discretion. An exploration of two areas in the emerging field of migrant human rights traces the multi-scalar transnational legal processes through which these norms are formulated and internalized.
Using a critical perspective, this study reviews human rights and media in the context of capitalist empire, using Habermas' notion that capitalism offers formal but not…
Using a critical perspective, this study reviews human rights and media in the context of capitalist empire, using Habermas' notion that capitalism offers formal but not substantive democracy. The author draws the reader into an impassioned discussion of the failure of government and media to address the significant inequalities in the world and the resulting human rights violations to demonstrate that human rights encompass concerns about economic and social inequalities as well as political and civil rights. Criticism of how capitalism treats rights has been part of the international human rights conversation since World War II.
Increasing human rights violations in the world today and the mass media's evidentiary lack of interest in the sources of these social problems underlie the author's earnest search for a better way. The study draws from the social science literature, while observing and gathering data on media coverage. Data limitations on media human rights indicate further research by the author that would explain the ideology and rhetoric as well as historic shifting patterns.
Scholarly excellence in higher education depends in part on the ability of members of the academic community to be able to travel abroad, to return home and to move freely…
Scholarly excellence in higher education depends in part on the ability of members of the academic community to be able to travel abroad, to return home and to move freely within a state for the purposes of study, teaching and research. Articles 12 and 13 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights of 1966 protect the right to freedom of movement and the right of aliens not to be arbitrarily expelled from a state, respectively. Any person may rely on these provisions to claim various stated entitlements related to freedom of movement. International human rights law does not, however, offer (clear) protection where an alien wishes to enter a state. It appears, however, that Article 26 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, prohibiting discrimination on the ground of, amongst other things, ‘political or other opinion’, may be relied on to prevent states from restricting the entry of scholars solely on the basis of the academic opinions they hold or views they have expressed. The right to freedom of movement of scholars – conceived as a right to academic mobility – forms a part of the right to academic freedom. International human rights law does not accord express protection to this right. Whereas the right to freedom of opinion and expression in Article 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights may be relied on to protect a multitude of facets covered by the right to academic freedom, Article 13 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights of 1966 on the right to education may, in fact, be seen to constitute a complete locus for the right to academic freedom.
An influential strand of human rights theory explains human rights through appeal to their function. Such ‘function’ theories highlight the role human rights play in…
An influential strand of human rights theory explains human rights through appeal to their function. Such ‘function’ theories highlight the role human rights play in international practice and discourse as standards for appropriate state treatment of individuals. But standards in what sense? Standards to be promoted and encouraged through public critique, bilateral pressure, institutional censure or legal culpability? Or standards to be protected and defended through all necessary means? I argue that function theorists conflate (what states themselves recognize as) the important distinctions between these standards. Worse still, many function theorists argue that a major – even definitive – role of human rights involves demarcating permissibility conditions for humanitarian intervention. I argue that this claim gravely mischaracterizes international practice and discourse – in particular it fails to recognize the independent significance of other functional norms operating within the global context. The theorists correctly perceive that we have powerful reasons for wanting this role (of threshold conditions for military intervention) fulfilled, but by mistaking the norms that in fact fulfil it, they distort the actual function of human rights.