Modern Subjectivities and World Political Order: The Evolution of the International

  • Stephan StetterEmail author
Part of the Palgrave Studies in International Relations book series (PSIR)


From an empirical angle there can be no doubt that individuals play a major role in international politics. International law, in the form of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948) or the International Covenants on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights as well as on Civil and Political Rights (1966) put the rights of individuals center stage; similar things can be said about the United Nations (UN) Millennium Development Goals or, in the context of military campaigns, the emerging norm of a Responsibility to Protect (R2P) and humanitarian international law more generally speaking. There are hundreds of Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), Amnesty International and Oxfam among the best-known ones, that lobby vis-à-vis states, International Organizations (IOs), and global and national publics in order to advance the rights of individuals. Individuals are, however, not merely an object of international regulation by IOs, NGOs, and states. They actively shape the international order by organizing collectively in the form of either nationalist movements and religious groups or protest movements, such as Attac. Individuals can also ignite conflicts—think only of Gavrilo Princip’s role in the assassination of Austrian Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo in June 1914, an event that contributed to the outbreak of the First World War.


Modern Subjectivity Empirical Angle Gavrilo Princip Best-known Ones Global Political Order 
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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Social Sciences and Public AffairsBundeswehr University MunichMunichGermany

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