Chapter

The Historical Argument

Arvind Sharma

in Are Human Rights Western?

Published in print April 2006 | ISBN: 9780195679489
Published online October 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199081714 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195679489.003.0001
The Historical Argument

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This chapter examines the historical statement that human rights are Western. Understood in this sense, it would amount to the claim that the concept of human rights first evolved in the West. And it is in this sense that human rights are to be understood as Western. This chapter argues that while ‘human rights’ are Western in origin, in their original conception they were not necessarily conceived as applying to all human beings but by and large only to male human beings of European extraction. The concept of Universal Human Rights is not quite so Western in origin but has become so by extension and application.

Keywords: human rights; historical statement; Western origin; Europeans; males

Chapter.  9249 words. 

Subjects: Human Rights and Immigration

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