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Freedom's Battle: The Origins of Humanitarian Intervention (Vintage)by Gary J. Bass
Synopses & Reviews
Why do we let evil happen? Why do we sometimes rally to stop it? Whose lives matter to us? These are the key questions posed by Gary Bass in this provocative look at the forgotten world of the first human rights activists.
Bass, a rising scholar at Princeton, illuminates the cultural and political landscapes of the nineteenth-century “atrocitarians,” as these activists were known, and shows us how a newly emergent free press exposed British, French, and American citizens to atrocities taking place beyond their shores, and galvanized them to action. Wildly romantic, eccentrically educated and full of bizarre enthusiasms, they were also morally serious people on the vanguard of a new political consciousness. Their legacy hasmuch to teach us about our worlds current human rights crises.
This gripping and important book brings alive over two hundred years of humanitarian interventions. Freedoms Battle illuminates the passionate debates between conscience and imperialism ignited by the first human rights activists in the 19th century, and shows how a newly emergent free press galvanized British, American, and French citizens to action by exposing them to distant atrocities. Wildly romantic and full of bizarre enthusiasms, these activists were pioneers of a new political consciousness. And their legacy has much to teach us about todays human rights crises.
About the Author
Gary J. Bass is a professor of politics and international affairs at Princeton University. He is the author of Stay the Hand of Vengeance: The Politics of War Crimes Tribunals. A former reporter for The Economist, he has written often for the New York Times, and has also written for The New Yorker, The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, The New Republic, and Foreign Affairs.
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