The SAGE Handbook of Human Rights will comprise a two volume set consisting of more than 50 original chapters that clarify and analyze human rights issues of both contemporary and future importance. The Handbook will take an inter-disciplinary approach, combining work in such traditional fields as law, political science and philosophy with such non-traditional subjects as climate change, demography, economics, geography, urban studies, mass communication, and business and marketing. In addition, one of the aspects of mainstreaming is the manner in which human rights has come to play a prominent role in popular culture, and there will be a section on human rights in art, film, music and literature.

Not only will the Handbook provide a state of the art analysis of the discipline that addresses the history and development of human rights standards and its movements, mechanisms and institutions, but it will seek to go beyond this and produce a book that will help lead to prospective thinking.

Universalism and Relativism

Universalism and relativism
Eva MariaLassen


In December 1948, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was presented to the UN General Assembly for adoption. In a speech delivered to the Assembly on the occasion, Charles Malik, one of the members of the UN Commission on Human Rights and a key figure in the drafting process of the Universal Declaration, claimed that all corners of the world had been heard and that all relevant wisdom from diverse traditions had influenced the final draft. At the same time, he said, no region had been permitted to dominate the process or the final draft (Glendon, 2001: 161). One of the reasons why Charles Malik was able to claim that all relevant wisdom had found its way into the ...

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