This book argues for greater openness in the ways we approach human rights and international rights promotion, and in so doing brings some new understanding to old debates. Starting with the realities of abuse rather than the liberal architecture of rights, it casts human rights as a language for probing the political dimensions of suffering. Seen in this context, the predominant Western models of right generate a substantial but also problematic and not always emancipatory array of practices. These models are far from answering the questions about the nature of political community that are raised by the systemic infliction of suffering. Rather than a simple message from ‘us’ to ‘them’, then, rights promotion is a long and difficult conversation about the relationship between political organisations and suffering. Three case studies are explored: the Tiananmen Square massacre, East Timor's violent modern history and the circumstances of indigenous Australians. The purpose of these discussions is not to elaborate on a new theory of rights, but to work towards rights practices that are more responsive to the spectrum of injury that we inflict and endure.
This book addresses the major theoretical and practical issues of the forms of citizenship and access to citizenship in different types of polity, and the specification and justification of rights of non-citizen immigrants as well as non-resident citizens. It also addresses the conditions under which norms governing citizenship can legitimately vary. The book discusses the principles of including all affected interests (AAI), all subject to coercion (ASC) and all citizenship stakeholders (ACS). They complement each other because they serve distinct purposes of democratic inclusion. The book proposes that democratic inclusion principles specify a relation between an individual or group that has an inclusion claim and a political community that aims to achieve democratic legitimacy for its political decisions and institutions. It contextualizes the principle of stakeholder inclusion, which provides the best answer to the question of democratic boundaries of membership, by applying it to polities of different types. The book distinguishes state, local and regional polities and argues that they differ in their membership character. It examines how a principle of stakeholder inclusion applies to polities of different types. The book illustrates the difference between consensual and automatic modes of inclusion by considering the contrast between birthright acquisition of citizenship, which is generally automatic, and naturalization, which requires an application.
Introduction In his illuminating essay Rainer Bauböck advances a comprehensive approach to the question of how to determine membership of a democratic political community, that takes into account alternative theoretical principles, a variety of kinds of contemporary membership claims, and the complexities of current multiple levels of political structures. He identifies his all citizen stakeholders
conditions continue to exist. But the trend is to greater mobility, and it may be that some state of greater mobility, short of extreme mobility, will pose greater challenges to the state than Bauböck allows. I use the archetypes of diaspora communities to critique his position on citizenship inside and outside the territory of the state. Diaspora communities may be disconnected from the political community of their state of residence even as they
notions of human rights draw indirectly or directly on some of our most deeply embedded presumptions and reference-points – for those of us in liberal democracies, particularly those cosmologies concerning the nature of the person and of political community. Questions about and concepts of the human as individual, of what is right, the state, justice, freedom, equality, and so on, flicker like a constellation of stars just off the edge of our fields of analysis – fading in and out, holding much, promising or claimed as anchorage, yet elusive and obscure. For many, the
‘universal’ and ‘relative’, and are often called in to support one side or the other. The peculiar intensity of the dichotomy, however, may derive from quite different and more limited roots in particular historical, political and conceptual accretions – shaped in the kind of dense layering that Michel Foucault’s work, most famously, has studied. It is this fundamental imbrication with the dominant constitution of political community that guarantees the argument between the two terms such embedded and knotted obduracy. Here this layered history can only be suggested
guarantees (social rights) by members born into national communities of fate (citizens). Rawls in turn built these assumptions into his theory of justice, which provided a liberal endorsement for social democratic policies. 1 His communitarian critics of the 1980s, 2 while lamenting the decline of family, associational and religious life, did not fundamentally question the nature of the political community itself, or the duties
by the state (or the majority) on the individual’s proper exercise of his or her freedoms and interests. Thus rights protect both the individual from incursions by the state and the individual’s interests in the context of the state. This way of conceptualising human rights has been fundamental to the evolution and the project of the modern free-market liberal democratic state. It has provided a remarkably powerful framework for the characterisation of both the individual and political community and for the identification of abuse. Moreover it has to a significant
‘answer’ to the ‘question’ of East Timor was independent statehood, and indeed Indonesia’s violence probably left no other answer available. Effective self-determination, however, and effective international understanding of and response to East Timor’s evolving circumstances may be anything but simple. Answers to questions around how to build a reasonably peaceful political order that East Timor’s circumstances pose for its own population and leadership, and for others, may be fundamental to how we understand political community. The history
. Thus, rather than being primarily an evangelical task of ‘truth-bearing’, or an assertion of the inevitable ‘rightness’ of a particular model of government, the promotion of human rights may demand long-term engagement with particular institutions or knots of social practice – with mechanisms for constructing community – across and between cultures. Response to abuse is part of a long and slow conversation between and across cultures on the nature of political community and the place of injury within it. In practical terms, efforts to change violent or injurious