COMMENT AND DISCUSSION The Open University, North West, United Kingdom In a recent issue of Philosophy East and West (vol. 52  [April 2002]) Fred Dallmayr's excellent `` `Asian Values' and Global Human Rights'' argued for a guarded form of rights relativism that acknowledges difference but also retains an aspiration for some form of genuine consensus. The key for Dallmayr, following Kothari and Sethi, is the creation of ``shared norms of civilized experience,'' subject to the caveat that this is not a simple negation of universality or moral universalism, but rather a rethinking of human rights in a direction that gives primacy to considerations of global justice--which in turn sustains rights as a protective shield. Such a rethinking or reconfiguration treats universality not as a fait accompli, but rather as a hope or yearning; above all, it deprives any given culture--especially Western culture--of pretensions to monopolize universal truth. (pp. 184185) For Dallmayr the project itself is best sustained as a bottom-up process of active citizenship across the ``three generations of rights'': civil and political, social and economic, and cultural and collective. In these regards I am in total agreement with Dallmayr, but I feel that two additions might
Philosophy East and West – University of Hawai'I Press
Published: Jun 10, 2003
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