Over the five decades since the establishment of the UN Charter and Universal Declaration of Human Rights, human rights issues have become a dominant feature of the international system, embracing new actors, eroding the traditional Westphalian concept of sovereignty, and leading to an acceptance that the treatment of individuals and groups within domestic societies is legitimately a focus of global attention. This book examines the effect of this normative evolution on the individual, state, institutional and advocacy network behaviour. Having described this normative environment it assesses its impact on key actors' relationships with China, particularly in the period since the Tiananmen bloodshed in June 1989. It also examines China's responsesDSinternational and internalDSto being the focus of global attention in this issue area. The book's theoretical concerns are to uncover the mechanisms through which international human rights norms influence especially the external but also the domestic behaviour of states.
Rosemary Foot is Professor of International Relations and John Swire Senior Research Fellow at St. Antony's College, Oxford University.