"Human Rights Theory and Comparative International Law Scholarship"

Michigan Law Authors
Publish Date
The UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in Practice: A Comparative Analysis of the Role of Courts
Publication Type
Book Chapter

An account of what we know about the use by domestic courts of international human rights law is identified, based on the findings in this volume and earlier work on the use of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW). From that, three aspects of the domestic functions of international human rights treaties are tentatively identified as particularly significant: international human rights law is only partly internationally-directed; domestic courts very seldom appear to be acting as ‘agents’ of international human rights law; and ‘human dignity’ (sometimes by itself, sometimes alongside ‘autonomy’ and ‘equality’) acts as an important meta-principle in the domestic use of international human rights law. The implications these functions have for normative theorising about human rights, in particular practice-dependent theories of human rights, is considered, and a theory of human rights law consistent with this practice is identified.

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