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Sceptical Essays on Human Rights

ISBN13: 9780199246687
ISBN: 0199246688
Published: August 2002
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Country of Publication: UK
Format: Paperback
Price: £45.99

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Britain's Human Rights Act 1998 is part of a wave of legislative and constitutional instruments that have been passed in a number of countries (including Canada, New Zealand and South Africa) and which put human rights at the top of the public law agenda. For the most part these instruments are widely welcomed by senior judges and by academic and practising lawyers, many of whom will have campaigned for their introduction. There are, however, very considerable doubts about the wisdom of these developments within the democratic tradition of government. which remain unanswered.

This collection of 20 essays written by an array of internationally prestigious scholars explores these reservations.;All the contributors endorse the importance of human rights within any democratic system of government, but question whether the primary responsibility for the articulation of these rights ought to be taken away from the normal political processes of representative government; they also consider the constitutional implications of doing so. Specifically, the extensive shift of political authority to the judiciary which is involved in Britain's Human Rights Act is critically examined and other ways of specifying and promoting human rights in more democratic forums are considered. Particular attention is paid to the priority which should be given to economic and social rights within the new constitutional settlement.

Overseas contributions, ranging from Eastern Europe to South Africa, via North America and Australasia, illustrate the pitfalls of importing other constitutional models.

Human Rights and Civil Liberties
Print on demand title;
1. Scepticism and Human Rights; 2 Richard Bellamy, University of Reading: Political Citizenship versus Fundamental Rights; 3 Martin Loughlin, London School of Economics: Rights, Democracy, and the Nature of the Legal Order; 4 Keith Ewing, King's College London: The Unbalanced Constitution; 5 Neil Walker, European University Institute: Human Rights in a Postnational Order: Reconciling Political and Constitutional Pluralism; 6 Jeffrey Goldsworthy, Monash University: Rights, Sovereignty, and 'the People'; 7 Tom Campbell, Australian National University: Incorporation through Interpretation 2: The Impact and Implications of the Human Rights Act; 8 Chris Himsworth, University of Edinburgh: Rights Versus Devolution; 9 Colin Harvey, University of Leeds: Human Rights in Northern Ireland; 10 Richard Rawlings, London School of Economics: Taking Wales Seriously; 11 Sandra Fredman, Exeter College, Oxford: Scepticism under Scrutiny: Labour Law and Human Rights; 12 Aileen McColgan, King's College London: Discrimination Law and the Human Rights Act; 13 Conor Gearty, King's College London: Tort Law and the Human Rights Act; 14 Alan Norrie, King's College London: Criminal Justice, Legal Rights, Judicial Interpretation: On Being Sceptical about the Human Rights Act; 15 Maleiha Malik , King's College London: Minority Protection and Human Rights 3: The Experience of Elsewhere: Reasons to be Sceptical; 16 Judy Fudge, Osgoode Hall Law School, York University: The Canadian Charter of Rights: Recognition, Redistribution, and the Imperialism of the Courts; 17 Saras Jagwanth, University of Cape Town: The South African Experience; 18 Wojciech Sadurski, European University Institute: Postcommunist Central Europe; 19 Mark Tushnet, Georgetown University: Scepticism about Judicial Review: A Perspective from the United States; 20 Jim Allan, University of Otago: The New Zealand Bill of Rights Act: Lessons for the UK?; 21 Adrienne Stone, Australian National University: The Australian Free Speech Experiment and Scepticism about the Human Rights Act.