Human rights

Food sovereignty and the International Peasants’ Movement

Farmer's market

Author/s (editor/s):

Dr Emma Larking

Publication year:


Publication type:

Journal article

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Mobilising for food sovereignty: the pitfalls of international human rights strategies and an exploration of alternatives

This article considers the role played by the language of human rights in a global campaign for food sovereignty. Led initially by the international peasants’ movement, Vía Campesina, the campaign opposes the globalisation of agricultural markets and neoliberal interventions in food production. Alongside other strategies, the campaign makes creative use of human rights and also seeks their institutionalisation in a UN Declaration on the rights of peasants. An examination of how the campaign employs human rights reveals a more complicated process than that suggested by the theoretical polarisation of ‘top down’ and ‘bottom up’ accounts of rights development in the sociology of human rights. It demonstrates both wariness of state power and attempts to harness the power of the state against international forces. It also shows that a desire for legal reform co-exists with the struggle for more radical social and political transformations.

Protecting economic and social rights in post-conflict Timor-Leste: a regulatory theory approach

Post-conflict countries often devote little attention to economic and social rights. This is partly because of other urgent priorities such as the security sector and electoral-political agendas associated with civil and political rights. The often-tenuous implementation of the separation of powers in post-conflict countries can also lead to widespread corruption, which in turn can hamper the protection of economic and social rights. In addition, a legalistic approach to rights can lead to human rights ritualism and this becomes another impediment to protecting economic and social rights.

Bookclub: Liberal democracies and the torture of their citizens

Cynthia Banham’s book analyses the responses of the USA’s liberal allies to the use of torture against their citizens after 9/11.

While Australia, the UK and Canada share similar political cultures, alliances and values with America, they behaved quite differently. Responses were shaped, in part, by demands for accountability placed on the executive government by domestic actors.

7th Annual Human Rights Tertiary Teachers' Workshop 2017

The 7th annual Human Rights Tertiary Teachers’ Workshop 2017 is being hosted by the Castan Centre for Human Rights Law out of the Monash University Faculty of Law City Chambers.

As with prior years, this workshop will bring together those engaged in teaching human rights in tertiary institutions around the country and from further afield, to share ideas about how teachers teach, and how students learn, in the area of human rights.


Updated:  10 August 2017/Responsible Officer:  Director, RegNet/Page Contact:  Director, RegNet