Human Rights

Human Rights: A Political and Cultural Critique provides a bracing and controversial analysis of the scope of human rights and lays the groundwork for a multicultural and more universal understanding of these rights.

Human Rights
A Political and Cultural Critique

Makau Mutua

2002 | 264 pages | Cloth $59.95 | Paper $26.50
Law | Public Policy
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Table of Contents

Preface
Introduction
Chapter 1. Human Rights as a Metaphor
—The Metaphor of Human Rights
—The Grand Narrative of Human Rights
—The Metaphor of the Savage
—The Metaphor of the Victim
—The Metaphor of the Savior

Chapter 2. Human Rights as an Ideology
—The Authors of Human Rights
—A Holy Trinity: Liberalism, Democracy, and Human Rights
—Conventional Doctrinalists
—The Conceptualizers
—The Cultural Pluralists
—Political Strategists and Instrumentalists

Chapter 3. Human Rights and the African Fingerprint
—Africa in a Rights Universe
—Human Rights in Precolonial Africa
—The Dialectic of Rights and Duties
—The Duty/Rights Conception
—Whither Africa?

Chapter 4. Human Rights, Religion, and Proselytism
—The Problem of Religious Rights
—Demonizing the "Other"
—Proselytization in Africa
—The Legal Invisibility of Indigenous Religions
—Ideals Versus Realities
—The Moral Equivalency of Cultures	
Chapter 5. The African State, Human Rights, and Religion
—Religion and African Statehood
—Identity Disorientation
—The Culture of Silence and Postcolonialism
—Counterpenetration as a Farce
—Benin Returns to Its Roots

Chapter 6. The Limits of Rights Discourse
—South Africa: the Human Rights State
—The Rights Framework as an ANC Strategy: A Snapshot of Apartheid
—The Evolution of a Rights Approach
—The Compromise of the Interim Constitution	
—The 1996 Constitution as a Normative Continuum
—The ANC's Gradualist Rights Approach
—Land Reform as a Central Plank of the Struggle
—Women in Post?Apartheid South Africa
—The Status and Orientation of Post-Apartheid Courts
—Humanizing the Instruments of Coercion
—Rights Discourse Not a Panacea

Conclusion
Notes
Index
Acknowledgments