From Cambridge University Press, here is a new book on the often forgotten contribution of Catholic thought to human rights law: Catholic Cosmopolitanism and Human Rights, by scholar Leonard Francis Taylor (National University of Ireland–Galway). The publisher’s description follows:
It is because Catholicism played such a formative role in the construction of Western legal culture that it is the focal point of this enquiry. The account of international law from its origin in the treaties of Westphalia, and located in the writing of the Grotian tradition, had lost contact with another cosmopolitan history of international law that reappeared with the growth of the early twentieth century human rights movement. The beginnings of the human rights movement, grounded in democratic sovereign power, returned to that moral vocabulary to promote the further growth of international order in the twentieth century. In recognising this technique of periodically returning to Western cosmopolitan legal culture, this book endeavours to provide a more complete account of the human rights project that factors in the contribution that cosmopolitan Catholicism made to a general theory of sovereignty, international law and human rights.
- Provides an engaging narrative on the integration of democratic and human rights norms into Catholicism, which in turn promoted those values through Christianity’s global reach
- A valuable historical survey of Catholicism as a cosmopolitan project from the medieval to the modern era
- Undertakes to provide a critical narrative of the development and direction of international law as it was characterised by Catholic preoccupations from the medieval and early modern era