Christian Human Rights eBook ✓ Christian Human

Christian Human Rights ➾ [Download] ➻ Christian Human Rights By Samuel Moyn ➷ – In Christian Human Rights Samuel Moyn asserts that the rise of human rights after World War II was prefigured and inspired by a defense of the dignity of the human person that first arose in Christian In Christian Human Rights Samuel Moyn asserts that the rise of human rights after World War II was prefigured and inspired by a defense of the dignity of the human person that first arose in Christian Human eBook  Christian churches and religious thought in the years just prior to the outbreak of the war The Roman Catholic Church and transatlantic Protestant circles dominated the public discussion of the new principles in what became the last European golden age for the Christian faith At the same time West European governments after World War II particularly in the ascendant Christian Democratic parties became tolerant of public expressions of religious piety Human rights rose to public prominence in the space opened up by these dual developments of the early Cold War Moyn argues that human dignity became central to Christian political discourse as early as Pius XII's wartime Christmas addresses announced the basic idea of universal human rights as a principle of world and not merely state order By focusing on the s and s Moyn demonstrates how the language of human rights was separated from the secular heritage of the French Revolution and put to use by postwar democracies governed by Christian parties which reinvented them to impose moral constraints on individuals support conservative family structures and preserve existing social hierarchies The book ends with a provocative chapter that traces contemporary European struggles to assimilate Muslim immigrants to the continent's legacy of Christian Human Rights.

  • Hardcover
  • 264 pages
  • Christian Human Rights
  • Samuel Moyn
  • English
  • 01 May 2014
  • 9780812248180

About the Author: Samuel Moyn

Samuel Moyn is professor of law and history at Harvard University He is the author of The Last Utopia Human Rights in History and Christian Human Rights among other books as well as editor Christian Human eBook  of the journal Humanity He also writes regularly for Foreign Affairs and The Nation.

3 thoughts on “Christian Human Rights

  1. Kimba Tichenor Kimba Tichenor says:

    In this book Samuel Moyn a professor of law and history at Harvard University details the conservative Christian origins of the immediate postwar interest in human rights However in making this argument Moyn is not suggesting that human rights emerged from a long Judeo Christian tradition but rather from a fairly recent development within Christianity particularly within Catholicism the rise of personalism in the early 1900s and its emphasis on human dignity In fact he argues that for centuries the notion of individual rights was anathema to the corporatist and hierarchical churches In making this argument he points to a few leading conservative Protestants and Catholics who played leading roles in the advancement of human rights in the postwar era and in some cases were active in the formation of the UN Declaration of Human Rights He argues that for these Christians the promotion of human rights in the immediate postwar era had less to do with Nazi crimes against the Jews and to do with their concern about a new enemy communism Thus the promotion of freedom of religion as a universal human right emerged in a religious framework rather than a secular one meaning it was intended to protect Christianity and the West from godless communism He supports this argument by pointing to the larger context in which postwar human rights emerged the rise of conservative Christian democracy in Europe the resurgence of interest in natural law and cultural conservatism in the United StatesWhile Moyn makes a very thought provoking argument this books is not without its problems First and foremost it too often reads like a polemic than a history The author's disregard for religion is readily apparent throughout the text; in fact he seems to suggest that it is the Christian origins of the postwar narrative of human rights that has ruined human rights today even though he claims that Christian human rights died in the 1960s replaced by a secular understanding of human rights in the 1970s He argues that the reason that the European Convention has repeatedly ruled against Muslim expressions of religion can be traced to the original definition of religious freedom which was intended to protect Christianity from godless communism Islam he asserts has replaced communism as the enemy of religious Christian freedom Thus rather than current prejudice and bias against Muslims that finds expression in flawed court judgements of the European Convention the problem is a fundamental flaw in how religious freedom in the immediate postwar was formulated Moyn's seeming disdain for religion also finds expression in the break he wants to draw between Christian human rights of the 1940s to early 1960s and secular human rights in the 1970s and thereafter This break ignores the reality that Christian missionaries in countries such as South Korea played an active role in transnational human rights activism in the 1970s and beyond In fact their activism contributed to a new geopolitical orientation in human rights activism But these missionaries did not engage in human rights activism despite their religious convictions but because of them This brings us to the final problem of the book It is too selective in its discussion of religious influences on the immediate postwar era Although Moyn does acknowledge that there was a Christian left both in Protestantism and Catholicism he focuses exclusively on the Christian right in his analysis Thus he does not discuss the origins of personalism in leftist Catholic circles In the 1920s many of those who advocated personalism were subject to censure by the church and were not rehabilitated until the postwar era Rather he begins his narrative of personalism's history after it has been co opted by the Pope Yet even then his discussion is selective arguing that there is no need to discuss how the Pope deployed personalism for positions on family and labor because it was not yet systematic For anyone who has read the 1930 encyclical Casti Connubii this assertion is wrong In this encyclical Pius XI utilizes personalism to advance a companionate model of marriage but one in which there is a clear hierarchical relationship between husband and wife not to mention between the married couple and the church Given the late twentieth century discussion of women's rights as human rights and sexual politics his decision to skip over the importance of this encyclical seems strange as at one level it would support his argument However the incorporation of personalism found in this encyclical would have conseuences for the Church one that opened the door to challenging some traditional arguments about the relationship between man and women between church and married couple and between church and society Thus by largely ignoring the religious left Moyn missed an opportunity to offer a much nuanced argument of how Christianity informed secular human rights discussions in the immediate postwar era and beyondMoyn readily admits in his epilogue that this book was only a start point for a further discussion of religious influences on postwar secular society As such it is well worth the read even though at many levels its analysis is flawed Still in detailing the contributions of many conservative Christians to the postwar narrative of human rights Moyn demonstrates the ways in which the narrative of human rights can be misused to advance a West and the rest history

  2. Pablo Pablo says:

    Anyone interested in human rights needs to read this book More importantly if you are skeptical or readily dismiss the idea of human rights as a liberal pursuit by naive idealist like many in my evangelical circle then you ESPECIALLY need to read this book The main argument advanced is that the language of human rights was constitutionalized by right wing Christian fundamentalist with ties and hopes for a globalized liberal democracy I've felt for awhile that we need a new framework for human rights I finally know why

  3. Jonathan Badgley Jonathan Badgley says:

    First a note on style The writing is difficult for me either as it reuires one to hold the subject and verb in mind over too many subordinate clauses or it simply demands too much background familiarity with its subjects On occasion there were metaphors casual language or euphemisms that would have been easily understood with clearer and direct language Maybe this is an issue of style for the entire field or maybe it’s an issue for Moyn but it would have otherwise caused me to rate the book lower had the content not been so illuminatingMoyn argues that contemporary readings of the rise exploration and explication of human rights has long since rejected or forgotten the crucial role that Christianity played in the introduction of human dignity and subseuently human rights as a defining feature of political theorizing First Christians introduced through constitutions like the Irish in 1937 and other organizational or foundational statements Second Christians were the first to develop the move to a an individualism that was palatable to non socialists Personalism a distinction of “cultural meaning“ and not literal which moved the focus on rights from groups to individuals but by way conservatisms such as appeals to natural law Christians were concerned to protect religious values practices and political role against the many political and cultural forces at work in the period including the polar forms of totalitarianism Nazism and Communism as well as secularism materialism and relativism Third Moyn describes the emergence of what he calls Christian Realism adherents include Jimmy Carter Barrack Obama and principally Reinhold Niebuhr which is a Christianity that understands that the world is dangerous and attempts to negotiate the demands of the nebulous and forming human rights with the practical concerns of national and international politics He provides a background on German Lutheran scholar Gerhard Ritter who is the first historian of human rights and a Christian Realist I would call a pragmatists who had conservative if not chauvinistic leanings Finally Moyn describes the threaded space Christian democracies have navigated between communism and secularism by working out ways in which contemporary secular democracies have abandoned religious freedom while having previously depended on it to engage with communism while those democracies were still Christian In the epilogue Moyn considers what Christianity is in relation to political movements or rather he considers how human rights fails to on its own provide its own basis and humanness like a good religion would with metaphysics liturgy and ritual How can human rights survive? And how can Christianity survive? The epilogue also features a now favorite uote of mine by Alfred Loisy Jesus Christ preached the coming of the Kingdom of God; unfortunately it is the Church that arrived

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *