Individual Rights and Collective Rights

Will Kymlicka

in Multicultural Citizenship

Published in print September 1996 | ISBN: 9780198290919
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191599712 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Political Theory

 Individual Rights and Collective Rights

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Investigates the connection between collective rights and individual rights, and challenges the liberal hypothesis that there is an inherent conflict between the two. It argues the need to distinguish between two meanings of ‘collective rights’, which can refer either to the right of a group to limit the liberties of members in the interest of group solidarity or purity (internal restrictions), or the right of a group to limit the powers of a majority to curtail the interests of minorities (external protections). It argues that the latter need not conflict with individual liberty, and indeed that what distinguishes a liberal theory of minority rights is precisely that it accepts some external protections for ethnic groups and national minorities while being very sceptical of internal restrictions.

Keywords: collective rights; individual rights; minority rights

Chapter.  5881 words. 

Subjects: Political Theory

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