A Closer Look at Law: Human Rights as Multi-Level Sites of Struggles Over Multi-Dimensional Equality
21 Pages Posted: 18 Jun 2010
Date Written: June 2010
Conflicts in human rights today are often conflicts around religion and equality. They focus on headscarves, swimming lessons or prayer during school. To understand them better, we need to resist the temptation to reduce them to cases or clashes between a determinate set of rights. Rather, we need to understand the political agendas set, including the culturalization of religion and the othering of sex equality, and we need to analyse such conflicts in contexts of contested secularism, as an occurrence in a world of multi-level (and thus also contested) regulation and as a problem of multiple inequalities. To solve them, this paper suggests relying on a triangle of fundamental human rights, with substantive equality and interrelated liberty as well as dignity.
Keywords: religious freedom, equality, culturalization, orientalism, secularism, multi-level regulation, multiple inequalities
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