Victims of Politics: The State of Human Rights; The New Politics of Human Rights; The Rights of Man Today; Human Rights and World Order; Human Rights

In This Review

Victims of Politics: The State of Human Rights

By Kurt Glaser and Stefan T. Possony
Columbia University Press, 1979
614 pp. $35.00

The New Politics of Human Rights

By James Avery Joyce
St. Martin's, 1979
305 pp. $19.95

The Rights of Man Today

By Louis Henkin
Westview Press, 1978
173 pp. $14.50

Human Rights and World Order

Edited by Abdul Aziz Said
Transaction, 1978
167 pp. $5.95

Human Rights

By David Owen
Jonathan Cape/Norton, 1978
154 pp. $8.95

The temper of the times-whether the cause is President Carter's crusade, the 30th anniversary of the Universal Declaration, or something else-has loosed a flood of printer's ink on the subject of human rights. Glaser and Possony have produced an encyclopedic work full of data on all the ways in which wars, ideologies and politics have violated the rights of groups and individuals. Joyce's book, more modest in size but also broad in outlook, focuses on the efforts that have been made through the United Nations and the European Community for the international protection of human rights. Henkin, in a series of distinguished lectures, combines a legal with a political and a humanist approach in treating both the constitutional and the international aspects. The Said volume is a collection of brief but often good essays. In the volume by the British Foreign Secretary, which is a real book and not just a collection of speeches, David Owen puts human rights in the context of British policy, or vice versa, and in passing gives his views on détente, Eurocommunism and other matters. It is striking that virtually every one of these authors believes that human rights have now achieved a recognition (in law and declared policy if not in practice) they never had before.

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