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2006

Human rights

Social and Behavioral Sciences

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Full-Text Articles in Law

Anthropology, Human Rights, And Legal Knowledge: Culture In The Iron Cage, Annelise Riles Mar 2006

Anthropology, Human Rights, And Legal Knowledge: Culture In The Iron Cage, Annelise Riles

Cornell Law Faculty Publications

In this article, I draw on ethnography in the particular zone of engagement between anthropologists, on the one hand, and human rights lawyers who are skeptical of the human rights regime, on the other hand. I argue that many of the problems anthropologists encounter with the appropriation and marginalization of anthropology's analytical tools can be understood in terms of the legal character of human rights. In particular, discursive engagement between anthropology and human rights is animated by the pervasive instrumentalism of legal knowledge. I contend that both anthropologists who seek to describe the culture of human rights and lawyers ...