Human Rights, Southern Voices: Francis Deng, Abdullahi An-Na'im, Yash Ghai and Upendra Baxi

Hardcover (Print)
Buy New
Buy New from
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $99.26
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 31%)
Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (7) from $99.26   
  • New (4) from $113.77   
  • Used (3) from $99.26   


A just international order and a healthy cosmopolitan discipline of law need to include perspectives that take account of the standpoints, interests, concerns, and beliefs of non-Western people and traditions. The dominant scholarly and activist discourses about human rights have developed largely without reference to these other viewpoints. Claims about universality sit uneasily with ignorance of other traditions and parochial or ethnocentric tendencies. The object of this book is to make accessible the ideas of four jurists who present distinct 'Southern' perspectives on human rights.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'The book on the whole offers a good insight into the similarities and differences. It helps to compare each particular stance to the other and allows relating them to those patterns of thought that are typical for western approaches in the study of human rights … Twining's edition makes available the particular view of four legal scholars from a non-Western background to a Western audience. Different social contexts, socio-cultural and activist experiences shaped the mind set with the help of which they understand, investigate and evaluate law and justice. This pluralist approach counts as an invitation to make academic discourse on international human rights less parochial and ethnocentric. Vergassung und Recht in Ubersee
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521113212
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 11/30/2009
  • Series: Law in Context Series
  • Pages: 248
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 9.80 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

William Twining is Quain Professor of Jurisprudence Emeritus of University College London. He has worked extensively in Eastern Africa, the Commonwealth and the United States. Much of his recent work explores the implications of globalisation for law and legal theory. His previous book, General Jurisprudence: Understanding Law from a Global Perspective, is a precursor of Human Rights: Southern Voices.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

1 Introduction William Twining 1

2 Francis Mading Deng 4

2.1 Introduction 4

Readings 9

2.2 The Cow and the Thing Called "What": Dinka Cultural Perspectives on Wealth and Poverty 9

2.3 Human rights, universalism and democracy 30

(a) Traditional institutions and participatory democracy in Africa 30

(b) Globalisation and localisation of democracy in the African context 33

(c) Universalism versus relativism in cultural contextualization of human rights 36

(d) Cultural constraints on the universality of human rights 39

(e) Dinka moral values and human rights principles 42

2.4 A cultural approach to human rights among the Dinka 44

2.5 Suggestions for further reading 52

3 Abdullahi An-Na'im 53

3.1 Introduction 53

Readings 58

3.2 Context and methodology: the Second Message of Islam 58

3.3 Shari'a and basic human rights concerns 62

3.4 Cultural legitimation: Towards a cross-cultural approach to defining international standards of human rights: The meaning of cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment 79

3.5 Islam and the secular state 91

(a) Why Muslims need a secular state 91

(b) Islam, Shari'a, and constitutionalism: non-Muslims 94

(c) Audiences 96

(d) Inclusive public debate 97

(e) Secularism in context 98

3.6 Economic, social and cultural rights (ESCR) 98

3.7 Suggestions for further reading 102

4 Yash Ghai 104

4.1 Introduction 104

Readings 109

4.2 Universalism and relativism: human rights as a framework for negotiating interethnic claims 109

Introduction 109

(a) Relativism: a critical assessment 113

(b) Generalizations from national studies 115

4.3 Understandinghuman rights in Asia 120

4.4 Quotations 150

(a) The Asian values debate 150

(b) Confucianism 151

(c) Hong Kong's Basic Law 151

(d) The nature of economic, social, and cultural rights 152

(e) The Justiciability of economic, social, and cultural rights 152

(f) Poverty and human rights 154

(g) Post-modernism, globalization, and the nation state 155

4.5 Suggestions for further reading 156

5 Upendra Baxi 157

5.1 Introduction 157

Readings 162

5.2 Voices of suffering and the future of human rights 162

5.3 Rights and "development" 204

(a) "Development", "terror" and the posthuman world 204

(b) Gandhi and development 207

(c) Time and development: The Millennium Development Goals 208

5.4 Suggestions for further reading 210

6 Conclusion William Twining 211

Bibliography 222

Index 231

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)