The Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Holocaust : an endangered connection /

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Bibliographic Details
Author / Creator:Morsink, Johannes, author.
Imprint:Washington, DC : Georgetown University Press, [2019]
Description:1 online resource (ix, 333 pages)
Subject:United Nations. -- General Assembly. -- Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Universal Declaration of Human Rights (United Nations. General Assembly)
Human rights.
Human rights movements.
Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945) -- Influence.
LAW -- International.
HISTORY -- Holocaust.
Human rights.
Human rights movements.
Influence (Literary, artistic, etc.)
Electronic books.
Electronic books.
Format: E-Resource Book
URL for this record:
Hidden Bibliographic Details
Notes:Includes bibliographical references and index.
Online resource; title from digital title page (viewed on January 23, 2019).
Summary:Johannes Morsink argues that the 1948 UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the human rights movement today are direct descendants of revulsion to the Holocaust and the desire to never let it happen again. Much recent scholarship about human rights has severed this link between the Holocaust, the Universal Declaration, and contemporary human rights activism in favor of seeing the 1970s as the era of genesis. Morsink forcefully presents his case that the Universal Declaration was indeed a meaningful though underappreciated document for the human rights movement and that the declaration and its significance cannot be divorced from the Holocaust. He reexamines this linkage through the working papers of the commission that drafted the declaration as well as other primary sources. This work seeks to reset scholarly understandings of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the foundations of the contemporary human rights movement.
Other form:Print version: Morsink, Johannes. Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Holocaust. Washington, DC : Georgetown University Press, 2019 9781626166295
Review by Choice Review

Morsink, author of three previous volumes on the Universal Declaration (UDHR), focuses this book on the galvanizing effects of the Holocaust in reconstructing the post-World War II order. The Holocaust led to two concurrent, interacting streams: a legal framework, starting with the Nuremberg trials, culminating in the International Criminal Court; and a moral movement, beginning with the UDHR and continuing through various global treaties. (A third post--World War II economic aspect linked to the creation of the World Bank and the IMF is mentioned but not discussed at length.) While the "idea" of human rights preceded the Holocaust, its horrendous mass slaughter stimulated the UDHR's 1948 text, which in turn gave birth to the human rights "system," all the while interacting with the "movement" of human rights. Morsink draws liberally from his preceding publications. Most of this book is devoted to extensive and insightful critiques of others' analyses. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Holocaust is thus most useful in its exhaustive examination of recent scholarship and in reasserting the centrality of the Holocaust as a precipitating event in the human rights movement and legal system. Summing Up: Recommended. Graduate students through faculty. --Claude E. Welch, emeritus, University at Buffalo, SUNY

Copyright American Library Association, used with permission.
Review by Choice Review