The belief that all human beings are born with inalienable rights has been the cornerstone of many successful, democratic societies. Such rights include the right to life, freedom (of thought, belief, conscience, expression, and movement), and property; others include economic, social, and cultural rights such as safety, health, education, equality, and prosperity; or the right to development. As perspectives on the basic tenets of human rights vary by country and culture, one must question whether these rights are truly inalienable, and whether they are inherent or created.
Human Rights enables readers to understand international standards for human rights, human rights abuses around the world, and the social, economic, and natural causes and effects of such abuses. The history of human rights concepts and declarations of human rights are examined, including the distinction that many historical theories and movements in human rights have made between social groups, namely free men versus women, children, slaves, and immigrants. This new resource goes on to explore human rights positions in the United States, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, China, Chechnya, and Iran. Each case study details the country's historical and cultural perspectives, unique circumstances, current debates and priorities, and efforts to reform and protect human rights.