Essay sample - International Human Rights and Social Justice

Social science
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The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, also known as UDHR, is a declaration of basic human rights that were adopted on 10 December 1948 by the United Nations General Assembly in Paris. The Declaration consists of thirty articles and was issued by Eleanor Roosevelt and…


Ernest Davies, a delegate of the UN stated It should not be forgotten ... that the war by its total disregard of the most fundamental rights was responsible for the declaration (Morsink, 2011).
The war served as the precedent for these human rights when nations came together to prevent further war and destruction. Human rights thus became universal at a crucial time in history. While 48 nations accepted the Declaration during its initial phase, these rights were not mandatory on any nation. Rather they were voluntary and paved the way for acceptance in law in many other including Canada where UDHR is part of the legal framework of the country. While many have argued whether these rights are actually universal but they were declared universal because they reflected on the views of the strong Western Nations that came to dominate the world after the Second World War. Even non-western nations consider these rights to be universal since they represent the ideals that these nations strive for.
The basis of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was created by Eleanor Roosevelt and Winston Churchill as they represented two of the strongest Western nations- the United States and United Kingdom. The first draft for UDHR was created by John Peters Humphrey which was rewritten by Rene Cassin after minor changes was made. The Declaration was unanimously accepted by all 48 nations who were present during the vote of its acceptance. However, there were eight absenteeism in the form of Saudi Arabia, Soviet Union, Belorussian Soviet Socialist Republic, Ukrainian SSR. Poland, Czechoslovakia, South Africa, Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia. The structure of the declaration was inspired by Code Napoleon which consisted of a preamble and general articles.
The Declaration starts with a Preamble with seven paragraphs. This preamble lays down the reasons for the introduction of the declaration; thus serving as the foundation for the general ...
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