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Beliefs about the European Court of Human Rights in the United Kingdom Parliament

24 Pages Posted: 19 May 2015 Last revised: 21 Sep 2015

Paul Johnson

University of York

Date Written: May 15, 2015

Abstract

There is widespread and growing mistrust of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) in the United Kingdom (UK). In response to what can be seen as the progressive ‘folk deviling’ of the ECtHR in the UK, the aim of this chapter is to explore how beliefs about the ECtHR are created and sustained. To achieve this aim, the chapter focuses attention on beliefs about the ECtHR that are expressed by members of the UK Parliament. Through an analysis of parliamentary debates, the chapter examines how parliamentarians discursively represent their beliefs about the ECtHR and how these beliefs come to achieve degrees of collective acceptance among MPs and Lords. As the analysis of parliamentary debates shows, the ECtHR is often depicted as a biased institution that poses a risk to the human rights of large sections of the UK population. If it is accepted that parliamentary discourse has an influence on wider public perceptions and opinions, then the beliefs expressed by parliamentarians that are outlined in this chapter should be of concern to anyone with an interest in encouraging a balanced and informed understanding of the ECtHR among the population of the UK.

Keywords: European Convention on Human Rights, European Court of Human Rights, Human Rights, United Kingdom

Suggested Citation

Johnson, Paul, Beliefs about the European Court of Human Rights in the United Kingdom Parliament (May 15, 2015). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2606878 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2606878

Paul Johnson (Contact Author)

University of York ( email )

Heslington
York, YO10 5DD
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www.york.ac.uk/sociology/our-staff/academic/paul-johnson/

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