Developing Human Rights Jurisprudence

2310-1784 (online)
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The volumes in this series contain the papers presented at a series of colloquia that were held in various locations throughout the Commonwealth from 1988–1998. The colloquia focused on the subject of the domestic application of international rights norms, and the extent to which these interrelate with national standards for human rights protection. A set of principles, The Bangalore Principles, were propounded in the first colloquium and developed in subsequent colloquia.

Developing Human Rights Jurisprudence

Developing Human Rights Jurisprudence

Sixth Judicial Colloquium on the Domestic Application of International Human Rights Norms: Bloemfontein, South Africa, 3–5 September 1993 You do not have access to this content

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Commonwealth Secretariat
01 Jan 1995
9781848595255 (PDF)

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One of an eightvolume series recording the development of international jurisprudence in human rights issues and, in particular, the domestic application of international human rights norms.

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  • Preface

    This volume contains the record of the sixth in a series of judicial colloquia on international human rights norms, held in Bloemfontein, South Africa, from 3 to 5 September 1993. The series began in Bangalore, India, in 1988, with subsequent meetings held at various Commonwealth venues: Harare, Zimbabwe (1989); Banjul, The Gambia (1990); Abuja, Nigeria (1991) and at Balliol College, Oxford, England (1992).

  • Race and Sex Discrimination in English Law

    In the absence of any written Constitution guaranteeing human rights, English common law failed to develop any general law to protect the individual as such, from any adverse discrimination on the grounds of race, colour, creed or sex. In consequence, the modern law is based on statute, primarily the Race Relations Act 1976 and the Sex Discrimination Act 1975. (I ignore for present purposes the statutory provisions which make criminal acts of incitement to racial hatred and similar conduct which have had little practical impact.)

  • Non-discrimination in International Human Rights Law

    Discrimination, inequality, and prejudice are problems that occur throughout the world. They can involve the most insidious human rights problems, especially if historically, and even unconsciously, they are rooted in a population's psyche. Slavery in the United States, the Holocaust, and South African apartheid are among the countless tragic episodes that show how discrimination can engender gross human rights abuses, affronting human dignity.

  • Discrimination and the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights

    Up to the end of the second world war in 1945, the concept and scope of human rights suffered from definite conceptual and structural defects. They were not differentiated from civil rights and were regarded as individualistic and, at best parochial, in scope. Such palpable backdrops of popular upheavals as the Magna Carta in England (1215), the French Declaration of the Rights of Man (1789) and the American Bill of Rights (1791) were looked upon as the exclusive concerns of the countries concerned.

  • Racial Discrimination and Freedom of Expression in the United States

    There are lessons to be learned from the American experiment with inserting democratic values into the nation's institutions. Even with imperfections and errors, human rights and individual liberties have been advanced as a result of guarantees built into the Bill of Rights. The thrust of this paper is to assess that part of the American experiment that deals with efforts to end racial discrimination through the use of guarantees in the Bill of Rights.

  • Discrimination - The Australian Response

    Most Australians believe that they live in an egalitarian society. Perhaps their conception is best captured by what we Australians laconically and frequently call the right to a “fair go”.

  • Discrimination and Equality Rights in Canada

    Canada's basic constitutional document - the British North America Act of 1867 (now called the Constitutional Act 1867) - makes no reference to the equality rights of individuals.1 In addition, the premable to that document declares that the new federal union would have “a constitution similar in principle of that of the United Kingdom”, which incorporates the doctrine of Parliamentary sovereignty

  • Freedom of Expression

    At the outset some fashionable fallacies need to be dispelled. Freedom of expression is not an exclusive western value nor is it a luxury of the affluent. Thanks to the constitutional guarantee of freedom of expression and the freedom of the press in India, numerous under-trial prisoners languishing for years in jails, several inmates of asylums and care homes, labourers working under horribly unhygienic conditions in stone quarries and brick kilns and countless children forced into hazardous employments, have obtained some ameliorative relief and were not consigned to the oblivion.

  • Freedom of Expression: An English Perspective

    Like most of my generation in Britain, I was brought up to believe that it was one of the privileges of being “an Englishman”, that yours was a country in which freedom of speech flourished. I remember well on my first visit to London in my early teens being taken to Hyde Park Corner on a Sunday morning to listen to free speech at work and being deeply impressed by the repartee between the soapbox orators and the hecklers in the audience. It therefore came as a great shock to me when, early in my legal career, I discovered that many commentators were far from convinced that freedom of expression was anything like as well protected as it should be in the United Kingdom.

  • Freedom of Expression

    The right to freedom of expression is defined by Art 10 of the European Convention in detailed and specific terms.

  • Freedom of Expression and of the Press and the African Charter

    The African Charter on Human And People Rights, like the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and such Regional Instruments as the European Convention and the Inter-American Convention, made elaborate statements on human rights norms and principles. The African Charter goes beyond the other two Regional Covenants in that it contains corresponding duties of individuals and Member States. But it falls short of them in that it provides, for the enforcement machinery, for only the African Commission on Human Rights and courts in exercise of their domestic jurisdictions.

  • Freedom of Expression in Canada

    Any discussion of this topic should start with our basic constitutional document - the British North America Act of 1867, now entitled the Constitution Act 1867. As mentioned in my accompanying paper on Equality Rights, the Constitution Act 1867 did not include a Bill of Rights with provisions for individual human rights protection, but rather such group rights as those of language, s. 133, and of separate (originally confessional) schools, s. 93.

  • Freedom of Expression - Some Recent Australia Developments

    The value of freedom of expression rests primarily on the ability of every individual to express his or her beliefs. A free society seeks to support individual self expression as a vital attribute of freedom not far less important than the protection of life itself. Life without freedom to express ideas and beliefs is less than human.

  • A Sketch from the Blue Train - Non-Discrimination and Freedom of Expression: The New Zealand Contribution

    The human rights scene in New Zealand seethes with activity. International instruments, including but not confined to those which the state has ratified, influence the interpretation and development of the domestic law. International jurisprudence from a wide range of countries is consulted and borrowed from by the Courts, as is appropriate in a small country willing to learn from precedents established in larger jurisdictions.

  • Annexes and In Memoriam
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