“An excellent interdisciplinary and philosophical enquiry into human rights in social context”

We were pleased to read the Times Higher’s recent review of Rights in Context: Law and Justice in Late Modern Society.

Law tends to be a discipline wedded to the “set text”. The topic of rights, however, permits teachers to be more creative when drawing up reading lists. If, like me, you prefer to teach human rights in more critical and less idolatrous tones, Reza Banakar’s edited volume, Rights in Context, is a useful addition to your course. It provides an excellent interdisciplinary and philosophical enquiry into human rights in social context – the sort of text that is often, without warrant, considered peripheral reading for human rights students. It offers a much-needed alternative to doctrinal, uncritical approaches to the study of human rights.   Nadine El-Enany

Rights in Context is edited by Reza Banakar, School of Law, University of Westminster, and is available in paperback and hardback.


Introduction: snapshots of the rights discourse, Reza Banakar; Law, rights and justice in late modern society: a tentative theoretical framework, Reza Banakar

Part I The Critiques of Rights: A sociological critique of rights, Max Travers; The ‘rights’ conundrum: poverty of philosophy amidst poverty, Radha D’Souza; Dangerous rights: of citizens and humans, Kate Nash; The neglected minority: the penurious human rights of artists, Paul Kearns; Truth and myth in critical theory, Eric Heinze

Part II The Challenges of Rights: Defacing Muslim women: dialectical meanings of dress in the body politic, Susan Edwards; Beyond the sacred and the secular: Muslim women, the law and the delivery of justice, Samia Bano; The right to be different: the position of Muslim migrants in The Netherlands, Halleh Ghorashi; It’s not about free expression: a sociological examination of the Danish cartoon controversy, Sarah Dreier; Pre-empting terrorism? Two case studies of UK’s anti-terrorism legislation, Reza Banakar

Part III The Strategies of Rights: Human rights strategies in an age of counter-terrorism, Daniel Moeckli; ‘Terrorist lists’ and procedural human rights: a collision between UN law, EU law and Strasbourg law?, Bill Bowring; Human security and international law: much ado about nothing?, Emma McClean

Part IV The Reconstruction of Rights: Rights and diverse effects in EC law: a Hohfeldian approach to the doctrine of direct effect of directives, Joxerramon Bengoetxea and Niilo Jääskinen; Investor’s rights to disclosure of complex financial instruments: a risk symmetric analysis, Joseph Tanega; Women, culture and human rights: feminist interventions in human rights law?, Harriet Samuels; Rights and responsibilities, Hanne Petersen


Full information, and sample pages, available on our website

Read the Law Society Gazette‘s review of Rights in Context

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