Nongovernmental Politics

Overview

To be involved in politics without aspiring to govern, without seeking to be governed by the best leaders, without desiring to abolish all forms of government: such is the condition common to practitioners of nongovernmental politics. Whether these activists concern themselves with providing humanitarian aid, monitoring human rights violations, protecting the environment, educating consumers, or improving the safety of workers, the legitimacy and efficacy of their initiatives demand that they forsake conventional...

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Overview

To be involved in politics without aspiring to govern, without seeking to be governed by the best leaders, without desiring to abolish all forms of government: such is the condition common to practitioners of nongovernmental politics. Whether these activists concern themselves with providing humanitarian aid, monitoring human rights violations, protecting the environment, educating consumers, or improving the safety of workers, the legitimacy and efficacy of their initiatives demand that they forsake conventional political ambitions. Yet even as they challenge specific governmental practices, nongovernmental activists are still operating within the realm of politics.Composed of scholarly essays on the challenges and predicaments facing nongovernmental activism, profiles of unique and diverse NGOs (including Memorial, Global Exchange, World Vision, and Third World Network), and interviews with major nongovernmental actors (Gareth Evans of International Crisis Group, Anthony Romero of the ACLU, Rony Brauman of Médecins sans Frontières, and Peter Lurie of Public Citizen, among others), this book offers a groundbreaking survey of the rapidly expanding domain of nongovernmental activism.

It examines nongovernmental activists' motivations, from belief in the universality of human rights to concerns over the fairness of corporate stakeholders' claims, and explores the multiple ways in which nongovernmental agencies operate. It analyzes the strategic options available and focuses on some of the most remarkable sites of NGO action, including borders, disaster zones, and the Internet. Finally, the book analyzes the conflicting agendas pursued by nongovernmental advocates—protecting civil society from the intrusions of governments that lack accountability or wresting the world from neo-liberal hegemony on the one hand and hastening the return of the Savior or restoring the social order prescribed by the Prophet on the other.

Zone Books

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781890951740
  • Publisher: Zone Books
  • Publication date: 4/1/2007
  • Pages: 696
  • Product dimensions: 7.50 (w) x 9.50 (h) x 2.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Michel Feher is a founding editor and publisher of Zone Books. He is the author of Powerless by Design: The Age of the International Community and the editor of Fragments for a History of The Human Body (with Ramona Naddaff and Nadia Tazi).

Yates McKee is an art critic based in New York City

Gaëlle Krikorian is a doctoral student at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales in Paris and a member of the consultative board AC27 at the national research agency on HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis (ANRS).

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Table of Contents


The Governed in Politics   Michel Feher     12
Motives
Human Rights
Radically Civil   Anthony D. Romero     31
Missing Persons   Trevor Paglen     50
"Where Are Human Rights...?": Reading a Communique from Iraq   Thomas Keenan     57
Speaking Plainly about Chechnya: On the Limits of the Juridical Model of Human-Rights Advocacy   Bridget Conley-Zilkic     72
Continuities profile of Memorial   Philippe Mangeot     83
The Trouble with Evenhandedness: On the Politics of Human Rights and Peace Advocacy in Sri Lanka   Alan Keenan     88
Principled Pragmatism   Gareth Evans     118
Humanitarian Care
Learning from Dilemmas   Rony Brauman     131
Humanitarianism: A Nongovernmental Government   Didier Fassin     149
The Sovereign, the Humanitarian, and the Terrorist   Adi Ophir     161
Humanitarianism Reconfigured: Philanthropic Globalization and the New Solidarity   Alex de Waal     183
Stakeholder Claims
Stakeholder Activism
The Consumer Dimension of Stakeholder Activism: The Antisweatshop Movement in the United States   Ian Robinson     200
Corporate Social Responsibility and Labor Rights in U.S.-Based Corporations   Mark Barenberg     223
Civic Think Tank   Peter Lurie     236
A New Era of Access to Rights?   Gaelle Krikorian     247
International Prostitution Policy and Sex Workers' Rights in India   Svati P. Shah     261
Biotechnology and Publicity profile of the Council for Responsible Genetics   Yates McKee     268
Ways
Presentations
Governance and Policies in Nongovernmental Organizations   Philippe Ryfman     285
Loose Bonds   Geert Lovink     299
Human Rights, Testimony, and Transnational Publicity   Meg McLagan     304
The Architecture of Strategic Communication profile of Witness   Meg McLagan     318
"Eyes and Ears": Aesthetics, Visual Culture, and the Claims of Nongovernmental Politics   Yates McKee     327
Registers
Nongovernmental Generation of International Treaties   James Love     359
Dilemmas of Home Improvement: Can Clean Energy Technology Mediate Civic Involvement in Climate Change?   Noortje Marres     368
The Lobby That Came in from the South profile of Third World Networic   Gaelle Krikorian     387
On Communication Rights
The Case for Communication Rights: After the World Summit on the Information Society   Soenke Zehle      391
Southern Views on the Political Economy of Information interview with Parminder   Jeet Singh     398
The Refugee-Media Nexus   Amy R. West     407
Between Testimony and Expertise: How Immigration Policies Challenge the Humanitarian Ethic   Estelle d'Halluin     419
Sites
Borders
2006 Immigrant Mobilizations in the United States   Claudio Lomnitz     434
The Migreurop Network and Europe's Foreigner Camps   Claire Rodier     446
Exceptional Times, Nongovernmental Spacings, and Impolitical Movements   Brett Neilson   Angela Mitropoulos     469
Naval Battle profile of Women on Waves   Elise Vallois     482
Disaster Zones
Bhopal: Unending Disaster, Enduring Resistance   Bridget Hanna     488
The Yes Men in Bhopal   Andy Bichlbaum   Mike Bonanno   Satinath Sarangi     524
Timor-Leste: Ground Zero profile of the Haburas Foundation   Philippe Mangeot     530
Monochrome Landscape (Green)   Laura Kurgan     534
Art and the Ends of Environmentalism: From Biosphere to the Right to Survival   Yates McKee     539
Designs
Civil Society (and its Discontents)
"Revolutions" Clothed in the Colors of Spring: Exporting Democracy to the East   Laetitia Atlani-Duault     586
Velvet Agitators profile of Eastern European movements   Philippe Mangeot     592
Must We Defend Society?: Governmentality, Civil Society, and Political Activism According to Michel Foucault   Matthieu Potte-Bonneville     604
The Closing of American Society   Gara LaMarche     622
"A Partner for Peace and Justice" profile of Global Exchange   Yates McKee     635
God's Work
Are Muslim Charities Purely Humanitarian?; A Real but Misleading Question   Jerome Bellion-Jourdan     647
Faith, Liberty, and the Individual in Humanitarian Assistance   Erica Bornstein     658
A Vision of the World profile of World Vision international   Erica Bornstein     669
Theologizing Human Rights: Christian Activism and the Limits of Religious Freedom   Elizabeth A. Castelli     673
Contributors     689
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