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This volume offers original research on religious freedom from around the globe. Individual chapters address the issues related to defining and understanding the concept of religious freedom and incorporate sociological thinking into interdisciplinary analysis of this topic. By interpreting legal cases, analyzing cross-national data, interviewing policy-makers, and reviewing policy-papers concerning religious freedom, the authors highlight the necessity of sociology engaging with other disciplines in this type of research. By applying theories of religious pluralism, secularity, secularization, judicialization of religion, “lived religion”, total institutions, and others, this volume contributes theoretical perspectives, sociological concepts and empirical analyses that highlight the development of religious freedom as an area of study in the social sciences.
Author: Mikhail Antonov
This volume examines the elements of formalism and decisionism in Russian legal thinking and, also, the impact of conservatism on the interplay of these elements. The actual conservative narratives, about the distinctiveness of Russian law, reveal certain features of the intellectual culture that is transmitted in legal education, scholarship and practice. These narratives are based on the idea of sovereignty understood as legal omnipotence of the state. References to sovereignty justify the requirement of legality in the sense of fidelity to the letter of the law. They also often serve as a rationale for crafting exceptions to constitutional non-discrimination principles as they are applied to political, religious, sexual and other minorities.
Smart Technologies and Fundamental Rights covers a broad range of vital topics that highlight the ethical, socio-political, and legal challenges as well as technical issues of Artificial Intelligence with respect to fundamental rights. Either humanity will greatly profit from the use of AI in almost all domains in human life, which may eventually lead to a much better and more humane society, or it could be the case that people may misuse AI for idiosyncratic purposes and intelligent machines may turn against human beings. Therefore, we should be extremely cautious with respect to the technological development of AI because we might not be able to control the machines once they reached a certain level of sophistication.
Towards the Reconstruction of a Materialist Theory of Law
Author: Sonja Buckel
On the basis of a reconstruction of legal theory in the tradition of Marx – a current that has been more or less silenced since the end of the 1970s – Subjectivation and Cohesion develops a critical counter-pole to the theories of law that predominate in social theory today.

To this end, the works of Franz Neumann, Otto Kirchheimer, Evgeny Pashukanis, Oskar Negt, Isaac D. Balbus, the so-called 'State-derivation School', Antonio Gramsci, Nicos Poulantzas and Michel Foucault are first analysed for their strengths and weaknesses, and then combined to form a new construction: a materialist legal theory that is up to date and can avoid the shortcomings of existing theories – above all their disregard for gender relations and the reductive consequences of functionalist, economic or politicist approaches to law. This book was originally published in German as Subjektivierung und Kohäsion. Zur Rekonstruktion einer materialistischen Theorie des Rechts, by Velbrück Wissenschaft, 2007, ISBN 978-3-938808-29-0.
Author: William Brant
In this book, William Brant uncovers social causes of violence, in search of reductive measures. Multiple legal systems are explored as reducers and implementers of violence and threats, especially criminal justice systems. War, propagandizing, power, corporate and governmental involvement in social domination, statehood, dangerous ideologies, and tribal sexual domination are explored in many cultures. Various levels and methods are given for observing, measuring and analyzing how people think and behave regarding the law, including examples of comedy. A theoretical chapter presents legal theory in relation to conceptions of possibility and misconceptions. These ideas are applied to judiciaries, which expose winning strategies for lawyers’ desired verdicts. Dr. Brant accounts for the interconnections between sexual selection, legal systems and wars.
Author: Richard Lang
The equality jurisprudence of the Court of Justice of the European Union has long drawn criticism for its almost total reliance on Aristotle’s doctrine that likes should be treated like, and unlikes unlike. As has often been shown, this is a blunt tool, entrenching assumptions and promoting difference-blindness: the symptoms of simplicity. In this book, Richard Lang proposes that the EU’s judges complement the Aristotelian test with a new one based on Michael Walzer’s theory of Complex Equality, and illustrates how analysing allegedly discriminatory acts, not in terms of comparisons of the actors involved, but rather in terms of distributions and meanings of goods, would enable them to reach decisions with new dexterity and to resolve conflicts without sacrificing diversity.
What is the role of ethno-cultural groups in human rights discourse? Under international human rights law, standards are unclear and ambivalent, while traditional analyses have often failed to elucidate and unpack the conceptual, legal, and policy complexities involved. In Ethno-Cultural Diversity and Human Rights, prominent experts chart new territory by addressing contested dimensions of the field. They include the impact of collective interests on rights discourse and nation-building, international law’s responses to group demands for decision-making authority, and concerns for immigration, intersectionality, and peacebuilding. Drawing from diverse scholarship in international law, legal and moral philosophy, and political science, this volume will be essential reading for scholars and practitioners of human rights, diversity, and conflict management.
To which extent is it legitimate, in view of freedom of conscience and religion, to sanction individuals for refusing to take part in an activity they claim to be incompatible with their moral or religious convictions? To answer this question, this study first clarifies some of the concepts of conscientious objection. Then it examines the case law of international bodies and draws distinctions in order to differentiate several types of objections, hence identifying the evaluation criteria applicable to the respect that each one deserves. Finally, this study proposes indications as to the rights and obligations of the State in front of those different types of objections.
In Freedom of Religion and Its Regulation in Nigeria: Analysis of Preaching Board Laws in Some States of Northern Nigeria, Ahmed Salisu Garba provides an account of how states in Northern Nigeria have enacted laws to regulate religious preaching in the spheres of influence. The work examines the debates surrounding the laws and how the state in collaboration with dominant religious groups persecuted members of minority religious in the states.
The author applied an argumentative approach to raise and analyse issues relating to the reasonability of the laws in Nigeria, reasons for their enactment, judicial review mechanisms employed in the determination of the reasonability of the laws in democracies, and how they accord with the freedom of religion clause in the Nigerian Constitution.
Author: Hanna H. Wei
In A Dialogical Concept of Minority Rights, Hanna H. Wei demonstrates that a more plausible and realistic concept of minority rights should consist of not only rights against the state but also rights against the group. She formulates and defends three separate but related rights to dialogue, and thoroughly analyses how they may operate not only to maintain a healthy balance between the minorities’ need to be culturally distinct and their need to relate to and belong in the larger society, but also that they address the generalisations and presuppositions on which the debate of multiculturalism has been based, and constitute the first step of a possible solution to many of the theoretical and practical difficulties of minority protection.