Rights Based Empowerment: Understanding the Interaction between Power and Rights Mobilization

28 Pages Posted: 9 Mar 2014 Last revised: 17 Mar 2014

See all articles by Benjamin van Rooij

Benjamin van Rooij

University of California, Irvine School of Law; University of Amsterdam - Faculty of Law

Kathinka Furst

University of Amsterdam - Faculty of Law

Date Written: March 7, 2014

Abstract

This paper develops an analytical framework to study how manifestations of power and power imbalances are related to rights mobilization. It seeks to understand how broader aspects of power sustain barriers to rights mobilization and to analyze broader empowerment approaches that are preconditional to successful rights invocation. The paper integrates the socio-legal literature on rights mobilization and access to justice to the broader social and political science literature on power into an integrated framework for rights based empowerment. In this framework perspectives and barriers of multiple relevant actors in multiple processes and arenas are combined. The idea of rights based empowerment recognizes that rights mobilization may often require a broader empowerment that is beyond existing socio-legal approaches that focus on direct and evident barriers to rights invocation without sufficiently addressing their underlying causes in power imbalances.

Keywords: access to justice, legal empowerment, law and development, rights mobilization, law and society

JEL Classification: K10

Suggested Citation

van Rooij, Benjamin and van Rooij, Benjamin and Furst, Kathinka, Rights Based Empowerment: Understanding the Interaction between Power and Rights Mobilization (March 7, 2014). UC Irvine School of Law Research Paper No. 2014-21, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2406215

Benjamin Van Rooij (Contact Author)

University of California, Irvine School of Law ( email )

401 E. Peltason Dr.
Ste. 1000
Irvine, CA 92697-1000
United States

University of Amsterdam - Faculty of Law ( email )

Amsterdam, 1018 WB
Netherlands

Kathinka Furst

University of Amsterdam - Faculty of Law ( email )

Amsterdam, 1018 WB
Netherlands

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