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University at Buffalo School of Law

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Full-Text Articles in Law

Standard Setting In Human Rights: Critique And Prognosis, Makau Wa Mutua Aug 2007

Standard Setting In Human Rights: Critique And Prognosis, Makau Wa Mutua

Journal Articles

This article interrogates the processes and politics of standard setting in human rights. It traces the history of the human rights project and critically explores how the norms of the human rights movement have been created. This article looks at how those norms are made, who makes them, and why. It focuses attention on the deficits of the international order, and how that order - which is defined by multiple asymmetries - determines the norms and the purposes they serve. It identifies areas for further norm development and concludes that norm-creating processes must be inclusive and participatory to garner legitimacy …


The Ideology Of Human Rights, Makau Wa Mutua Jan 1996

The Ideology Of Human Rights, Makau Wa Mutua

Journal Articles

This piece argues that although human rights is an ideology although it presents itself as non-ideological, non-partisan, and universal. It contends that the human rights corpus, taken as a whole, as a document of ideals and values, particularly the positive law of human rights, requires the construction of states to reflect the structures and values of governance that derive from Western liberalism, especially the contemporary variations of liberal democracy practiced in Western democracies. Viewed from this perspective, the human rights regime has serious and dramatic implications for questions of cultural diversity, the sovereignty of states, and the universality of human …