Feminist Critique Of International Human Rights Summary

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Hevi Rahmania
President University

Reitman, O. (1997). “Cultural Relativist and Feminist Critiques of International Human Rights”,100(1), 100-110.
The journal, “Cultural Relativist and Feminist Critiques of International Human Rights”, by Oonagh Reitman endeavors to address the critiques towards the International Human Rights from two different branches which are coming from cultural relativist and feminist. The addressed problem in this journal is despite the apparent tension between these two clashing critiques, there are similarities found in order for both to operate together.
Human rights are universal and simply applied by virtue of being human and culture has no place in it (Donelly 1989: 109-110). This journal starts by
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Due to the repetitiveness and fairly confusing explanations, there are at least three arguments found in order to support the main idea. The first one is both critiques agree that human rights are and should not be universal. Both are criticizing the practice of International Human Rights however the relativist will further dispute on both theory and practice of International Human Rights. Feminist stresses that the practice of universality is still poor as only men’s right seems to be protected. Women have not been included in ‘human’ of human rights. Reitman provides supporting idea from the feminist campaign “Women’s Right as Human Rights”. In the other hand relativist believes that human rights are imbued by culture which is now dominated the international community. Human rights are viewed as modern form of imperialism of Western value. Therefore the similarities exists on how both critiques’ perception on the image of human rights. Feminist will see human rights as the image of men and relativist will see it as the image of the West. The second argument is each critiques have its own hidden agenda. Relativist argues on the feminism that national interest is in line with the feminism (Mayer 1995a: 184), states will use feminist cause to cover the motives to attack the enemy states. While feminist argues on the relativism that the attempt of relativist to protect the diversity of culture will just promote the dominance of male which has no sympathy to the well-being of women. Reitman concludes that human rights are made to prioritize a certain side. Supported by the study shows how certain countries have used the status of women to fulfill their political objectives. The third argument is both critiques have their own particular type of version in considerations of human rights. Feminist accuses the relativist by having male version of culture.

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