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Human Rights Literacies Research: (Re)think Approaches and Methodologies

  • Anne Becker
  • Cornelia Roux
Chapter
Part of the Interdisciplinary Studies in Human Rights book series (CHREN, volume 2)

Abstract

In this chapter we aim to put forward some proposals for human rights literacies research which focus on re-envisaged approaches to teach and learn about, through and from human rights. We argue that human rights literacies research should ask questions regarding the shift in human rights advocacy from a top-down to a bottom-up approach, collapse the binaries on which human rights and human rights education are premised and disrupt assumptions that human rights and human rights education are inherently transformative and emancipatory. To achieve this, approaches and methodologies to research need to be rethought. Human rights literacies research needs approaches and methodologies focusing on subjectification (not only socialising people towards normalised patterns of marginalisation), the relational aspects of human rights (which include the relational aspects of human rights knowledge within unique place-space-time), disrupt binaries (which is often reinforced by the use of critical theories) and on closing the gap between the discursive and lived realities. While not negating the fact that critical theory was the historic core of human rights education (cf. Tibbitts, Human rights education. Theory, research, praxis, 2017) and still has a role to play in the developing of human rights literacies, we propose a shift to resistance theories (cf. Baxi, Human rights in a posthuman world. Critical essays, 2007), such as post-colonial and posthuman approaches and methodologies in order to (re)structure human rights, human rights education and human rights literacies from the bottom-up.

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Stellenbosch UniversityStellenboschSouth Africa

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