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Sovereignty, State Failure and Human Rights

Petty Despots and Exemplary Villains

Neil Englehart

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Routledge
12 December 2019
Politics & government; International human rights law
This book argues that the effectiveness of the state apparatus is one of the crucial variables determining human rights conditions, and that state weakness and failure is responsible for much of the human rights abuses we see today. Weak states are unable to control their own agents or to police abuses by private actors, resulting in less accountability and more abuse. By contrast, stronger states have greater capacities to protect human rights; even strong authoritarian states tend to have better human rights conditions than weak ones.

The first two chapters of the book develop the theoretical connections between international law, sovereignty, states and rights, and the consequences of state failure for these relationships. The empirical chapters (Chapters 3-6) test the validity of these theoretical claims, employing a multi-method approach that combines quantitative and qualitative methods. Englehart uses case studies of Afghanistan, Burma/Myanmar and the Indian state of Bihar to analyze types and patterns of state failure, based on analysis of NGO reports, archival research, primary and secondary texts, and interviews and field research.

Examining what happens to human rights when states fail, the book concludes with implications for scholars and activists concerned with human rights. This book will be of great use to scholars of international relations, comparative politics, human rights law and state sovereignty.
By:   Neil Englehart
Imprint:   Routledge
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 234mm,  Width: 156mm, 
Weight:   304g
ISBN:   9780367884604
ISBN 10:   0367884607
Pages:   208
Publication Date:   12 December 2019
Audience:   College/higher education ,  Primary
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active
Introduction 1. Rights and the State 2. State Failure 3. A Global View 4. Afghanistan: Catastrophic Collapse 5. Burma/Myanmar: The Illusion of Strength 6. Bihar: The Privatization of Violence Conclusion

Neil A. Englehart is Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science at Bowling Green State University, USA.

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