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(p. 168) 8. Human rights 

(p. 168) 8. Human rights
(p. 168) 8. Human rights

Tom Campbell

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date: 25 November 2020

This chapter examines issues arising from analyses and critiques of human rights, including the nature and significance of rights in general, and the functions of human rights. It considers the philosophical and practical justifications for believing (or not believing) in human rights, different theories concerning how we might determine the content and scope of human rights, and how human rights should be implemented. Key themes discussed in this chapter include natural rights and the rights of man. A case study on torture and counter-terrorism is presented, along with Key Thinkers boxes featuring John Locke and Immanuel Kant. The chapter suggests that normative political theorists should promote a vision of human rights that relies primarily on political participation, progressive human rights legislation, and morally informed international diplomacy, rather than the transfer of political power from governments to courts.

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