This lecture brings together more than 20 years experience as an advocate taking cases to the European Court of Human Rights on behalf of Kurds against Turkey and Chechens against Russia, and others – with a materialist account of human rights, especially the right of peoples to self-determination, which I have described as the “revolutionary kernel” of post-WWII international law. See Chapter 1, Bill Bowring The Degradation of the International Legal Order? The Rehabilitation of Law and the Possibility of Politics (Routledge Cavendish 2008). The power-point presentation further explores the question of the genesis of this right, and its contemporary relevance.
This lecture was given within the framework of the 2012 School of Critical Theory organized by the Centre for the Humanities in Utrecht. The programme was titled ‘Risk Societies and Cosmopolitanism’, and offered trans-national and interdisciplinary approaches drawn from the humanities, social sciences, law, philosophy and international relations. Its focus on the development of cross-national European perspectives in these areas, allows for the innovative use of key notions of cosmopolitanism across different national, cultural and disciplinary traditions. The school consisted of three clusters, which focused on Cosmopolitanism and risk society, Cosmopolitanism and the social responsibility, and Cosmopolitanism and the civic duty of Digital Media.