Some Middle-Age Spread, a Few Mood Swings, and Growing Exhaustion: The Human Rights Movement at Middle Age

Penelope Andrews

New York Law School

Tulsa Law Review, Vol. 41, No. 4, 2006

This paper was presented at a symposium, "The Scholar as Activist", dedicated to the work of Nadine Strossen, President of the ACLU. This paper focuses on the subject of international human rights law and the engagement of scholars as activists in this area of law. At fifty-plus years, and therefore soundly middle aged, the global human rights project today provides occasion for reflection and evaluation. This paper observes that human rights have increasingly become the language of progressive politics. In many ways, this focus on human rights globally echoes the struggle for civil liberties and civil rights in the United States in earlier decades. Then, despite widespread opposition, the vision of a society underpinned by human rights and dignity seemed attainable; this emboldened generations of activists and inspired many scholars. And sometimes, inspiration and boldness merged to shape the scholar as activist. The path-breaking contributions of scholars like John Hope Franklin, C. Vann Woodward, and Kenneth Clark to the 1954 decision of Brown v. Board of Education reflect the scholar as activist in the finest light. Using the South African democratic process as a case in point, the article assesses the transformative potential of human rights law.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 24

Keywords: human rights

JEL Classification: K10, K19, K40, K33, K39

Open PDF in Browser Download This Paper

Date posted: March 12, 2008  

Suggested Citation

Andrews, Penelope, Some Middle-Age Spread, a Few Mood Swings, and Growing Exhaustion: The Human Rights Movement at Middle Age. Tulsa Law Review, Vol. 41, No. 4, 2006. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1103763

Contact Information

Penelope Andrews (Contact Author)
New York Law School ( email )
185 West Broadway
New York, NY 10013
United States
Feedback to SSRN

Paper statistics
Abstract Views: 1,044
Downloads: 128
Download Rank: 152,114

© 2015 Social Science Electronic Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved.  FAQ   Terms of Use   Privacy Policy   Copyright   Contact Us
This page was processed by apollo3 in 0.282 seconds