Synopses & Reviews
Selected by Choice magazine as an Outstanding Academic Book for 1999Born of a shared revulsion against the horrors of the Holocaust, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights has become the single most important statement of international ethics. It was inspired by and reflects the full scope of President Franklin Roosevelt's famous four freedoms: the freedom of speech and expression, the freedom of worship, the freedom from want, and the freedom from fear. Written by a UN commission led by Eleanor Roosevelt and adopted in 1948, the Declaration has become the moral backbone of more than two hundred human rights instruments that are now a part of our world. The result of a truly international negotiating process, the document has been a source of hope and inspiration to thousands of groups and millions of oppressed individuals.
"Revealing and useful." --Michael Ignatieff, "New York Review of Books" "Definitive. Essential reading for everyone interested in human rights." --David P. Forsythe, "Choice" "Morsink merges history and philosophy in a way that simultaneously roots the Universal Declaration in a particular time and place and reveals its enduring contemporary significance and value." --Jack Donnelly, "Human Rights Quarterly" "No other books takes the reader behind the scenes into the drafting details. . . . (Morsink's) seminal account merits reading by all invested in the Declaration--activist, academic, official, or victim." --Jerome E. Shestack, "American Journal of International Law"
"A splendid volume . . . fused with political and philosophical insight into the fundamental concepts underlying the Declaration."-"American Journal of International Law"