“Theories of Human Rights: Political or Orthodox – Why It Matters”

“Theories of Human Rights: Political or Orthodox – Why It Matters”. in Moral and Political Conceptions of Human Rights: Implications for Theory and Practice . R. Maliks &J. S. Karlsson. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press 2017: 77-96.
One important contribution by a philosophical theory of international legal human rights [ILHR] is to provide normative perspectives and standards to assess the current international human rights regimes. .. There is currently a discussion about how two families of theories may best be used to develop such a philosophical theory of ILHR. ..”Orthodox” philosophical accounts .. tend to hold that behind the human rights movement generally – including ILHR – there is a unitary, cogent notion of moral human rights. .. “Political” theories pursue another aim and justificatory strategy. They aspire to systematize the existing international legal human rights practice, and seek to end with a theory with sufficient critical standards, – without drawing on a prior concept of a human right. … The aim of this article is primarily to alleviate some of the alleged conflicts, in particular to defend at least one Political theory against charges that it is unduly constrained to actual consensus on premises in defense of ILHR, that it is too closely linked to the current state system to match the universal ambitions of human rights, and that it seeks to avoid normative premises. [D0I/LINK] [SSRN] [WEB].