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Humiliation, Degradation, Dehumanization: Human Dignity Violated

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Abstract

Degradation, dehumanization, instrumentalization, humiliation, and nonrecognition – these concepts point to ways in which we understand human beings to be violated in their dignity. Violations of human dignity are brought about by concrete practices and conditions; some commonly acknowledged, such as torture and rape, and others more contested, such as poverty and exclusion. This volume collates reflections on such concepts and a range of practices, deepening our understanding of human dignity and its violation, bringing to the surface interrelationships and commonalities, and pointing to the values that are thereby shown to be in danger. In presenting a streamlined discussion from a negative perspective, complemented by conclusions for a positive account of human dignity, the book is at once a contribution to the body of literature on what dignity is and how it should be protected as well as constituting an alternative, fresh and focused perspective relevant to this significant recurring debate. As the concept of human dignity itself crosses disciplinary boundaries, this is mirrored in the unique range of perspectives brought by the book’s European and American contributors – in philosophy and ethics, law, human rights, literature, cultural studies and interdisciplinary research. This volume will be of interest to social and moral philosophers, legal and human rights theorists, practitioners and students.

Chapters (14)

The concept of human dignity is one of the few philosophical notions that has gained popular currency beyond specialist academic discourse. From the writings of Pico della Mirandola, Immanuel Kant and other philosophers it has found its way into our colloquial vocabulary. Appeals to human dignity are an important part of ethical, legal and political discourse nowadays and appear frequently in national constitutions and UN documents, in newspapers, NGO publications and in human rights discourse. But what is it that motivates all this talk about human dignity?
Human dignity is one of the key concepts of our ethical evaluations, in politics, in biomedicine, as well as in everyday life. In moral philosophy, however, human dignity is a source of intractable trouble. It has a number of characteristic features which apparently do not fit into one coherent ethical concept. Hence, philosophers tend to ignore or circumvent the concept. There is hope for a philosophically attractive conception of human dignity, however, given that one takes three crucial turns. The negative turn: to start the inquiry with violations of human dignity. The inductive turn: to consider the whole range of applications of the concept of human dignity in different areas of ethics. And finally, the historical turn: to take into account the historical bonds between human dignity and traditional conceptions of dignity. Taken together they point in the direction of an understanding of human dignity as universal nobility.
There are two possible understandings of the idea of a collective dimension of humiliation. One is: Can collectives violate human dignity? And the other is: Can someone violate the (human) dignity of a collective? The first understanding points to the familiar direction of collective agency and collective responsibility. We ask questions like: Are the Germans responsible for the Holocaust? Is the United States to blame for Guantanamo Bay? And: Do men add to the subjection of women by tolerating or downplaying its importance? There is an ongoing debate over the question whether there can be collective agency and responsibility and how it should be understood if it exists at all.1 Although this is surely an important debate, it is not the question I want to focus on. My concern here is the second understanding of the question: Can someone violate the human dignity of a collective? The initial response to this question seems to be no, because collectives have no dignity and certainly nothing like human dignity. I think this answer is plainly wrong because it rests on a confusion of methodological and ethical individualism (Lukes 1973). It is correct that collective entities do not have dignity apart from their human members, but this does not mean that we have to look at individuals alone and not at groups when being concerned about humiliations. In what follows, I will explain how an account of collective or, rather, shared dignity can be understood and why this is not an issue ethical individuals need to fret about. First, I will describe three ways in which a group can be humiliated. I will then assess how the third and most indirect way, namely group humiliation through the humiliation of individual members, can be understood. Finally, I will outline how an account of shared dignity might help us to understand the role of a concept of special group rights within the family of human rights.
Following the thought of G.W.F. Hegel, this article attempts to look at “human dignity” as a particular form of vulnerability – a symbolic vulnerability, which has its roots in a desire for recognition. My reflections follow two objectives, the starting point for both of which is Hegel’s “struggle to death”. (1) What does it mean to speak of “dignity” in terms of vulnerability? It means to look at human dignity not as worth or as a strength, but rather as a specific fragility. For Hegel, the longing for recognition implies a dependency on recognition. This dependency may even go so far that human beings accept being insulted. Thus, a person may be recognized so little that an act of humiliation is taken as an act of recognition. From the viewpoint of an autonomy-perspective on human dignity, this openness for humiliation might itself appear to be humiliating. This paradox is discussed by contrasting two readings of Hegel: one which brings him closer to Kant, and one which refers to Judith Butler’s account of recognition. (2) My second objective is to point to the symbolic dimension of violations of human dignity. This “rituality” of humiliation has its roots in the symbolic dimension of recognition. In recent social theories, the “act of recognition” is spelled out in symbolic terms: To be recognized is to be addressed by the other. This is the reason why not only acts of recognition but also acts of misrecognition, and of humiliation, have a constitutive symbolic dimension. We can indeed be humiliated by simple words. But even mere violence can have a certain ritual dimension – and it is perhaps this very dimension that constitutes its humiliating force.
This chapter focuses on a number of common questions relating to the concept of degradation, against the backdrop of that concept as it has developed in the jurisprudence of the European Convention on Human Rights, specifically in relation to the prohibition of degrading treatment within Article 3. The prohibition of torture and inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment is commonly understood, and is expressed in case-law, as having an intimate connection with the concept of human dignity, the language of which underpins the modern human rights regime. The basic structure of the Article 3 understanding of degradation is outlined, alongside examples of its practical application, in order to highlight significant conceptual relationships. Questions concerning the significance of the individual emotion of degradation, the relevance of autonomy in understanding degradation, and the relevance of the idea of social dignity can be illuminated by a contextualized discussion of the jurisprudence. It is suggested in this respect that the scope of what can be understood as degradation is not limited primarily by the victim’s emotional experience, that the jurisprudence draws our attention to one particular facet of autonomy, and that the essence of the concept of degradation is helpfully captured in the idea of abuse of equal rank.
Dehumanization – the designation of the unlivable, the unintelligible, the ungrievable inhuman – is that almost unimaginable process by which human beings are rendered so radically other that their lives count for nothing. In this chapter, the author considers how victims, perpetrators and bystanders of atrocity come to perceive the loss of humanity and, in particular, the extent to which this (mis)perception is linked both physically and discursively to the figure of the human body. Paying attention to the concrete corporeality of dehumanization as it is described in testimonial texts, the author suggests that to think of “human dignity” as an abstract and disembodied quality becomes problematic in its failure to recognize the embodied, lived experience of suffering human beings. By focusing on testimonial accounts of dehumanizing atrocity, this chapter points to the significance of our role as receivers of testimony, also potentially guilty of dehumanizing perception, and emphasizes the possibility within the testimonial encounter both to repeat and to resist the logic of dehumanization and the unmaking, self-destroying power of bodily pain.
In this chapter I try to elucidate the concept of human dignity by taking a closer look at the features of a paradigmatic torture situation. After identifying the salient aspects of torture, I discuss various accounts for the moral wrongness of such acts and argue that what makes torture a violation of human dignity is the perverted moral relationship between torturer and victim. This idea is subsequently being substantiated and defended against important objections. In the final part of the chapter I give a (qualified) defense of the methodology employed in the previous sections.
While rape has long been thought of as a prime example of a violation of human dignity, it has only recently started to be conceptualized as a human rights violation. This chapter analyzes international human rights jurisprudence on rape, assessing whether it adequately protects the human dignity of women. In particular, it examines how rape has been classified in international human rights jurisprudence and what obligations have been imposed on states to ensure respect for the dignity of women. While acknowledging significant contributions in setting the standard of protection of women’s dignity, the chapter criticizes the failure of the mainstream human rights bodies to conceptualize rape as a form of sex discrimination, as well as their gendered application of the public/private divide and occasional reference to family integrity and morals. The chapter argues that rape is a severe violation of human dignity regardless of whether it has been committed by a private individual or a state actor, and violates the right to be free from torture, the right to private life and the right to equality and freedom from discrimination.
Social Exclusion can be mainly understood in three different ways: as a form of spatial separation, a lack of participation, or as emanating from practices of misrecognition. One of the approaches based on the latter understanding was proposed by the Israeli social philosopher Avishai Margalit. For him, social exclusion by practices of misrecognition is one way to harm human dignity. Margalit frequently referred to the persecution of Jews during National Socialism in order to substantiate this thought. In my chapter, I take up this thought and demonstrate that in national socialist Germany various practices of misrecognition played an important role within anti-Semitism, a fact which can be clearly shown in the politics of the personal name. This is because the personal name is a unique symbol of human dignity. The giving of a name is not only a performative act by which we become singular and distinctive; first and foremost, it inaugurates us as social beings. I would like to distinguish four stages within which Jewish names were targets of social exclusion during National Socialism: insult, degradation, debasement and humiliation. What began as a seemingly harmless and ordinary practice of teasing, displayed in nicknames such as “Itzig”, gradually developed into a system of utmost cruelty, embodied in a state-run policy of debasement and exclusion of a whole section of the population, which was initiated by the declaration of the names “Sarah” and “Israel” as obligatory for Jews. This system culminated in the concentration camps where the number replaced the human name. As the paradigmatic figure of the nameless, I will examine the so called “Muselmann” more closely. He marks the transitional point where social exclusion turns into social death, and the loss of human dignity becomes absolute.
The paper deals with the question of whether poverty as such violates the dignity of persons. It is argued that it does. This is, it is argued, not due to a lack of basic goods, nor to the fact that poverty prevents persons from enjoying the rights they have, particularly the right to bodily integrity. Poverty does violate dignity, so it is argued, insofar as poor people are dependent on others in a degrading way.
Bonded labor relations in India have commonly and primarily been understood in terms of economic exploitation and manifestations of local power structures. While their frequent concomitant conditions such as impoverishment, denial of freedom, physical stress, adverse health effects, practices of social degradation, and, not rarely, also physical violence are reported in almost all studies on bonded labor, these factors have rarely been looked at from the perspective of human dignity. However, the link between conditions of labor bondage and violations of dignity has yet to be established and respective dynamics to be discovered. This essay is intended as a first attempt to systematically interrogate various acts and conditions of subjugation within bonded labor relations with regard to the laborers’ experiences of deprivation, degradation, and annihilation, and the violations of dignity that may result. It is argued that seemingly comparable humiliating conditions may be processed and dealt with differently by different bonded laborers. While it is certain that, within bonded labor relations, human dignity is violated every day on a massive scale, there is also evidence that bonded laborers may, under certain conditions, yet be able to maintain their dignity. Once we stop reducing bonded laborers to their bondage and pay attention to their collective and individual identities, their social practices and social spaces, we may not only be in a position to grasp the extent of violations suffered individually but also to identify the resources that may allow for the limiting, negating or negotiating of those violations.
An analysis of violations of human dignity seems to offer an inductive pathway to human dignity, that some find more promising than theory-guided elaborations of a positive account. This paper wants to stress the need to develop a positive account of human dignity. It is impossible to determine which kind of actions are violations of human dignity without a positive account. It is furthermore difficult to understand the relevance of those violations for a comprehensive concept of human dignity without a positive approach. The paper aims at developing an understanding of what one could expect from an account of human dignity in two steps. In the first place some general features of a modern concept of human dignity are described, such as the equality of dignity, the other-regarding prescriptivity, the emphasis on the inherent worth of the individual and the overriding normative claim of human dignity. The aim would be to show those elements that distinguish disputes about human dignity from other debates about honour, social standing, ideals of excellence and the like. In a second step the paper formulates a set of questions that each theory of human dignity must answer: Who has human dignity? What is the relationship between human dignity and human rights? What is the normative content of human dignity? What is the ontological status of human dignity? And what kind of justification for human dignity can be expected? The list is not complete but the paper aims to identify those questions to which each account of human dignity should give an answer. Human dignity is the basic concept of our moral and political order. Therefore a comprehensive understanding of human dignity is only possible through the development of a positive account. Perhaps such a positive account can not be developed and justified but that can only be decided after a discussion of the questions raised above; and if those questions cannot be answered then we have reasons to abandon the concept of human dignity altogether. Whether or not human dignity is a meaningful, or meaningless and empty concept, can only be decided through a discussion about success and failure of a positive account.
This paper sketches a partial account of human dignity. The account is Kantian in the loose sense of having been inspired by some of Kant’s views. But it contrasts sharply with a traditional Kantian account. The paper tries to isolate some shortcomings of the traditional account – in particular that it condemns as morally impermissible certain actions of heroic self-sacrifice as well as certain actions of privileging the young over the old in the distribution of scarce, life-saving resources. The new account attempts to avoid such implications while preserving some of the traditional account’s attractive features. According to the new account, dignity is preeminent and unconditional value, possessed by all and only persons, that is, beings who have certain psychological capacities, including autonomy. An agent’s action expresses respect for persons’ dignity if, without treating anyone merely as a means, he or she aims in performing it to maximize persons’ preservation. The paper distinguishes between two dimensions along which person preservation might be maximized and suggests how to weigh each of these dimensions in decisions about whom to try to preserve.
After 1945, we were confronted with the need for a new conception of human dignity, since totalitarian mass destruction had proven the fundamental violability and fragility of dignity. This chapter will argue that human dignity can no longer be seen as an “inalienable value” that we cannot lose, but as a precarious capability for basic human flourishing – and more specifically, as a potential for embodied self-respect that needs to be protected by corresponding human rights. Therefore, dignity is the explicit reason or “purpose” behind the proclamation of human rights today: as necessary legal conditions for living a life in embodied self-respect. And as a consequence, philosophy should not make the mistake of extrapolating from categorical human rights, held by all human beings just by being human, to a likewise categorical possession of dignity. Instead, it is because human beings do not have equal human dignity from the start that they all have equal human rights.
... The value of many things in life is relative, and dependent on external circumstances, but there are certain goods with absolute value, the primary one being human dignity (Kant, 1785(Kant, /2016) -the most basic human right that applies to all people equally (Kaufmann, Kuch, Neuhaeuser, & Webster, 2010). Infringements on a person's human dignity cannot occur without causing fundamental injury, and can hardly have a place in a just system (Witkin & Irving, 2014). ...
... Infringements on a person's human dignity cannot occur without causing fundamental injury, and can hardly have a place in a just system (Witkin & Irving, 2014). Five primary threats to human dignity have been defined: humiliation, degradation, dehumanization, non-recognition, and instrumentalization (Kaufmann et al., 2010). It is clear that language testing procedures should not subject test takers to humiliating or degrading procedures (ILTA, 2000), but it should also be understood that failure to recognize test takers as individuals, or using them as a means to an end, qualifies as a threat to their dignity. ...
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Justice has been the topic of comparatively few papers in the fields of applied linguistics or language assessment. This may be due to the lack of a clear and agreed-upon definition on the one hand, or to the difficulty of operationalizing justice for test development on the other. This paper aims to remedy both problems by discussing prior conceptualizations of justice and by introducing six justice principles, which are based on theories of distributive justice that focus on human rights, fairness, equal opportunity, and dignity. The overarching aim of this paper is to advance the debate on justice, and to provide a consistent way of considering ethical and moral dilemmas that language testers face today.
... This is also due to the difficulty of capturing the phenomenon of dignity; it is difficult to answer such questions as for why people in certain situations feel less or more dignified. To facilitate this task, dignity researchers tend to investigate it through the prism of organizational pathologies that pose a threat (Kaufmann et al., 2011;Karlsson, 2012;Crowley, 2014). In this sense, non-humanitarian working conditions, regarding exploitation, mobbing, inability to meet basic needs, unequal treatment based on gender or age, traineeship, limitation of employees' freedom, burdening people with too high performance requirements or showing disrespect to their opinions, indicate processes hazardous to human dignity (Melé, 2014;Kostera and Pirson, 2017). ...
... At this level, the employee's autonomy is limited and, thus, there is little talk about any ethics in dealing with people; exploitation, aggression, and bad treatment of employees manifests the pathologies of lacking humanistic working conditions (e.g. Snyder, 2010;Kaufmann et al., 2011;Hicks, 2016). ...
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Purpose: The aim of this article is to fll the gap in the discourse on management about the concept of dignity in the workplace. The text presents the issue from the perspective of humanistic management. The article analyzes contemporary discussion about dignity in the workplace conducted in the Western discourse on management. Methodology: The reflections stem from a critical analysis of popular concepts of dignity in the workplace in the management discourse. The author also uses the existing results of empirical research. The analysis uses management literature on dignity, which is the basis for systematizing available concepts. Findings: The literature analysis enables systematization of various concepts of dignity in the workplace and identifcation of specifc levels in the quality of employee treatment in an organization. Hence, the author identifes a few key factors that affect employees’ dignity in the workplace both positively and negatively and indicates mechanisms that allow for the humanization of work processes. Research limitations: The theoretical reflections should be verifed by empirical research in organizations. However, the area of research on dignity in the workplace is not problematized enough, potential problems still require in-depth theoretical research. Practical implications: The reflection on dignity in the workplace emphasizes the organizational mechanisms that lead to the humanization and dehumanization of work processes. The problematization of the category of dignity should allow researchers to conduct empirical research in organizations and managers to design organizational solutions that protect the well-being of their employees which, in consequence, may have a positive impact on the organization’s development. Originality: The article discusses the concepts of dignity in the workplace which are absent in the Polish discourse of management and indicates directions of further research in the feld.
... However, there is a difference between forgiving in the context of ordinary offences and in the context of extraordinary events of extreme cruelty such as a massacre, genocide or a torture. The reality of everyday suffering as a product of marginalisation and poverty affects people's physical and psychological welfare, but atrocity has particular effects on people's lives, mainly because it represents extreme cases of violation of people's dignity (Kaufmann et al., 2010). Atrocity challenges our cultural norms for dealing with unbearable suffering (Card, 2002), including our emotional norms that create the social expectation about when we should forgive. ...
Chapter
There is a strong relationship between emotions and memory (Reisberg and Hertel, 2003; Stein et al., 2009). Events are more vividly recalled when they have an emotional component, which occurs for positive and negative emotions; for public and private events; and for positive and traumatic memories (Christianson, 1992; Pillemer et al., 1988; Porter and Birt, 2001; Reisberg and Hertel, 2003; Rubin and Kozin, 1984). The relationship between memory and emotions in the post-atrocity context provides a venue of analysis for the study of emotions that sustain or transform conflict. For instance, emotions are relevant for understanding how people construct their victim identity by maintaining the negative feelings associated with the experience of suffering alive — how victims are enticed to forgive or resent past sufferings (Enns, 2012; Harkin, 2003). Emotions can have a concrete impact on societies in transition, by strengthening negative or positive emotional climates, which are central for processes of reconciliation (Bar-Tal et al., 2007).
... Despite its increasing ubiquity as an underpinning principle of contemporary healthcare provision, dignity is an inherently difficult concept to define. Occupying a foundational place within international human rights law, understanding violation of dignity seems intuitive and witnessing such violation arguably motivates us to care about, and seek to promote, dignity in the first place (Kaufmann et al, 2011). The term 'dignity' is derived from the Latin 'dignitas' meaning worth (Mairis, 1994;Clark, 2010) while the Oxford English Dictionary definition is 'the state or quality of being worthy of honour or respect'. ...
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Aim: The aim of this research was to investigate student nurses' perceptions of the concept of dignity in the care of older people. Student nurses regularly move between the classroom and the clinical setting and are thus ideally placed to cast light on the barriers that exist to providing dignity in care and the way in which their theoretical understanding of dignity is shaped by exposure to the practice setting. Method: All student nurses on a three-year undergraduate nursing programme at one university were invited to participate in an online questionnaire survey and focus groups. Results: Students equated the practice of upholding dignity with listening to individuals, involving them in decision making and maintaining their privacy. Participants were mostly confident about what dignity meant in practice, but were unsure about the more theoretical aspects. Four major barriers to the promotion of dignity were highlighted—these were organisational, environmental, professional and personal in nature. Conclusion: Dignity education should occupy a more prominent position in pre-registration nursing programmes.
... 9). Similarly, Axel Honneth (1995), as well as Kaufmann, Kuch, Neuhäuser, and Webster (2011), defines humiliation in terms of nonrecognition and misrecognition and violation of human dignity, respectively. These are only a few examples, but they would suffice to clarify the main focus of philosophers. ...
Chapter
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This chapter examines the role of humiliation in experiences of collective victimization. Humiliation is conceptualized as a self-conscious emotion that is distinct from shame, anger, and embarrassment. Humiliation is experienced when dehumanizing and devaluing treatment occurs that is appraised as illegitimate. The chapter discusses the paradox in the literature on humiliation, whereby both action (e.g., cycles of violence) and suppression of action (e.g., demobilization of resistance) have been observed as an outcome of humiliation. Drawing on research on the experience of Dalits in the Hindu caste system, a conceptualization of humiliation is presented that is relational, victim-centered, and focused on agency and power relations. Humiliation is conceptualized as a claim, which involves both the appraisal of certain acts of victimization as humiliating, and the political act of communicating resentment to the perpetrator. Overall, humiliation can be used to mobilize or demobilize resistance to oppression.
... This meaning refers to the feeling of 'inherent value and worth' that people experience (Hicks 2011: 6). Dignity as a feeling can be understood in opposition to humiliation (Fattah and Fierke 2009;Kaufmann et al. 2010). According to Avishai Margalit 'if there is no concept of human dignity, then there is no concept of humiliation either ' (1996: 149). ...
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The idea that humanity has equal and intrinsic value is at the core of the modern conception of human dignity. In societies in transition from conflict or authoritarianism, the human dignity of victims has been violated and denied through the abuse of their human rights and the lack of recognition of their worth through systematic and diverse forms of humiliation. Transitional justice mechanisms are considered tools for the restoration of victims' human dignity, however this concept has been unproblematized and taken for granted without a clear understanding of what human dignity and its restoration mean in the everyday life of ordinary people. This working paper intends to help to overcome these blind spots in the literature of transitional justice by reaching into the debates on human dignity in philosophy, legal research (particularly in constitutional law and human rights law); in restorative justice; and in social science. Further, it presents the Colombian reparations, truth commissions, and historical memory commission as a rich environment in which the tensions between local and universal conceptions of human dignity are identified, questioned, and analysed. From a sociological perspective, the paper proposes a categorization of the different ways in which the category of human dignity and dignification are used in the context of transitional justice. Author Sandra Milena Rios Oyola is a FNRS Postdoctoral Researcher at
... However, the application in practice of specific instruments falls far short in many -perhaps most -states and, in spite of the development of this international body of law, prisoners remain a vulnerable population, and as such, are easy targets for continued human rights abuses [7][8][9]. Regarding the European detention system, one of the most relevant examples of poor implementation of legislation is overcrowding. As shown in the latest Annual Penal Statistics of the Council of Europe (SPACE), "on 1 st September 2015, European prisons were at the top of their capacity, holding, on average, almost 92 inmates per 100 places. ...
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This paper presents a part of the results of a research project named "Prisoners’ Rights. Romania in the European Context", conducted at the Institute of Sociology of the Romanian Academy, between November 2015 and September 2017. Given the novelty of our study for Romania, we have considered an exploratory data analysis as a feasible methodology, able to objectively highlight and model our findings. Based on the perception of the sociological inquiry respondents (N = 557), the main causes of the violation of their right to a decent life in penitentiary were identified to be overcrowding, disinterest on the part of the state and old infrastructure of penitentiaries. From a statistical point of view, the Pearson’s chi square test indicated significant or highly significant associations between most of the causes of the breaching the prisoners’ right to decent living.
... And indeed, there is now an extensive body of interdisciplinary empirical research that has reconfirmed Freire's basic intuitions and posed new questions. Dehumanization-humanization, for example, has been increasingly studied in psychology and philosophy, along with related issues such as degradation and humiliation (Haslam & Loughnan, 2014;Kaufmann, Kuch, & Webster, 2011). ...
... Dignity is an 'ethos' rooted in the value accorded to human life, in the identification of shared qualities, and in interrelationships (Barilan, 2012, in particular p. 5, 28e52). Theoretical scholarship constitutes the majority of a longstanding, vast, and unremitting literature in theology, history, ethics, moral philosophy, political philosophy, legal philosophy, and combinations thereof (some examples are Andorno, 2009;Barak, 2015;Barilan, 2012;Beitz, 2013;Beyleveld and Brownsword, 2001;Calo, 2012;Cancik, 2002;Dilley and Palpant, 2013;Donnelly, 2015;Jackson, 2003;Kateb, 2011;Kaufman et al., 2011;Khaitan, 2012;Kirchhoffer, 2013;Neal, 2014;Punt, 2010, Pullman, 2002Rosen, 2012;Waldron, 2012; two recent anthologies to give a sense of the breadth of the literature are Düwell et al., 2014, andMcCrudden, 2013, and in the health-related context, two recent works which provide an overview of different taxonomies of dignity are Foster, 2011, andJacobson, 2012). To these more theoretical conceptualisations of dignity as a normative value, empirical research has contributed understandings of individual perceptions of the experience of dignity violation and promotion, revealing the multi-faceted strands of the 'webs of meaning' around the dignity idea (Barilan, 2012, p. 89). ...
Article
Dignity is a slippery concept to define – yet it has been at the heart of media and policy debates around the provision of health and social care in recent years; particularly in the United Kingdom following the Mid-Staffordshire scandal and subsequent Francis Inquiry. This paper considers the concept of dignity in care from the perspective of student nurses. Thus, it allows us to discuss how professional nurses-to-be conceptualise dignity and also how they consider it should/could be taught at undergraduate and postgraduate levels of training, and as part of their Continuing Professional Development. It is only through understanding how student nurses conceptualise and experience human dignity, and the giving and receiving of dignity in care, that it will be possible to support its facilitation in the preparation of practitioners. This paper reports on findings from a series of participatory research workshops held with undergraduate nursing students in Scotland in 2013–14 that were designed to engage the students in the development of educational resources to support the teaching of dignity in care within the nursing curriculum. The outputs from each workshop, along with analysis of transcripts of the workshop discussions, demonstrate the value of co-design as a methodology for involving students in the development of interdisciplinary resources. We observed a desire from students to actively enhance their understandings of dignity – to be able to recognise it; to see dignity in care being practiced; to experience providing such care and to have the appropriate tools to reflect on their own experience. Overall, the research revealed a rich understanding of the ways in which human dignity is conceptualised by nursing students as an embodied practice, associated with memory and personal to an individual. It was understood by the students as shifting, experiential and fragile.
... In all of these cases, if one is not responsive to (what one takes to be) reasons in the range that partly distinguishes that attitude from others, then one is not recognizing the other in that way. 5 Just as there are many varieties of adequate regard, wronging or mistreating others also comes in many varieties. For example, a recent volume illustrates the variety of violations of human dignity: instrumentalization, degradation, dehumanization, torture, rape, social exclusion, absolute and relative poverty, trade exploitation and bonded labour (Kaufmann et al. 2011;cf. Thompson and Yar 2011). ...
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Misrecognition from other individuals and social institutions is by its dynamic or ‘logic’ such that it can lead to distorted relations-to-self, such as self-hatred, and can truncate the development of the central capabilities of persons. Thus it is worth trying to shed light on how misrecognition differs from adequate recognition, and on how misrecognition might differ from other kinds of mistreatment and disregard. This paper suggests that misrecognition (including nonrecognition) is a matter of inadequate responsiveness to the normatively relevant features of someone (their personhood, merits, needs etc.), and that if the kind of mistreatment in question obeys the general dynamic or ‘logic’ of mutual recognition and relations-to-self, then it may be called ‘misrecognition’. Further, this article considers the multiple connections between misrecognition and human fallibility. The capacity to get things wrong or make mistakes (that is, fallibility) is first of all a condition of misrecognition. Furthermore, there are two lessons that we can draw from fallibility. The first one points towards minimal objectivism: if something is to count as a mistake or incorrect response, there must accordingly exist a fact of the matter or a correct response. The other lesson points towards public equality: if our capacity to get things right on our own is limited, then public, shared norms will probably help. Such norms are easier to know and follow than objective normative truths, and they may contain collective cumulative wisdom; and of course the process of creating public norms embodies in itself an important form of mutual recognition between citizens.
... However, there is a difference between forgiving in the context of ordinary offences and in the context of extraordinary events of extreme cruelty such as a massacre, genocide or a torture. The reality of everyday suffering as a product of marginalisation and poverty affects people's physical and psychological welfare, but atrocity has particular effects on people's lives, mainly because it represents extreme cases of violation of people's dignity (Kaufmann et al., 2010). Atrocity challenges our cultural norms for dealing with unbearable suffering (Card, 2002), including our emotional norms that create the social expectation about when we should forgive. ...
Chapter
This chapter analyses the re-enactment of funerary rituals, especially of the children’s funerary ritual known as Gualí and traditional funerary songs for adults known as Alabaos, as forms of social and cultural memorialisation. There are two aspects that are relevant for this analysis; first, the re-enactment of these funerary rituals can be understood as a form of resistance to cultural annihilation. Second, they contribute to managing negative emotions associated with memory afflictions such as la mala muerte. The re-enactment of death rituals is analysed by reviewing the literature on spontaneous shrines, grassroots memorials and public mourning, taking into account the relevance of the religious component in these practices.
... Peter Coleman, Jennifer Goldman, and Katharina Kugler (Coleman, Goldman, and Kugler, 2009 ) conducted a first-of-its-kind empirical study of the nature of the relationship between humiliation and intractable conflict, observing: ...participants were found to be more likely to respond to humiliating encounters aggressively when the emotional role of the humiliated victim was perceived by them as allowing for aggressive reactions against the humiliator…Furthermore, people were more likely to ruminate about the encounter, and therefore maintain anger and aggressive intentions when they perceived the situation to privilege aggressive acts… (p. 126) Beyond these institutional efforts, scholars around the world are contributing to the study of humiliation as a root cause of violence by examining the link between humiliation and terrorism, torture, and genocide (Danchev, 2006; Ginzburg and Neria, 2011; Held, 2004; Saurette, 2005; Varvin, 2005); by describing the role of humiliation in social revolutions and intractable conflicts (Fahmy, 2012; Fattah and Fierke, 2009; Victoria Fontan, 2006; Giacaman et al., 2007; Ginges and Atran, 2008; Tschudi, 2008); and by assessing the impact of humiliation in times of transition and globalization (Kaufmann and Kuch, 2011; Moïsi, 2009; Oravecz, Hárdi, and Lajtai, 2004; Saurette, 2006; D. Smith, 2008; Stark and Fan, 2011). These are a few examples of the recent developments in research on humiliation ; much, much more must be done. ...
... Even though Nussbaum derived her analysis from examining sex and social justice, the taxonomy she developed is domain independent. Indeed,Kaufmann (2011)proposes a similar reasoning in his analysis of instrumentalization. His definition of the concept is more practical and emphasizes three conditions. ...
... This concept recognizes an asymmetry between those who share typically human qualities and those who are considered less human. 12,13 A particular form of dehumanization is 'infrahumanization'; it consists of the latent attribution of emotional characteristics. 14 Some emotions are considered unique to humans ('secondary emotions' such as love, regret, and nostalgia), whereas others are considered common to humans and animals ('primary emotions' such as joy, anger, and sadness). ...
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This article considers the relationship between dehumanization, ontological representation of death, trust in physicians, and burden of care on the part of caregivers of terminally ill patients. One hundred informal caregivers (relatives and friends) of patients hospitalized in four hospice facilities in northern Italy were involved. Of these, 77% were primary caregivers (those who mostly helped the patient). All of the participants were given a questionnaire comprising the Caregiver Burden Inventory (CBI) to determine caregivers' burden in their roles, the *questionario post mortem (QPM)* (post mortem questionnaire) for the effectiveness of and their trust in the medical nursing team of palliative care services, the Testoni death representation scale (TDRS) to detect their ontological representations of death and the humanity attribution test (HAT) to investigate their attributions of humanity to terminally ill patients. Per the literature, the present results demonstrated higher burden levels for female caregivers and primary caregivers. In informal caregiving, the dehumanization of patients does not have any advantage in reducing the burden of care. Further studies are required to compare formal and informal caregivers concerning the effect of dehumanization.
... i We thank an anonymous reviewer for helping us think about framing this issue as the " parole paradox. " ii See, for example, Brown, Harris, and Hepworth 1995; Fangen 2006; Fisk 2001, 2005; Gilbert 1997; Kaufmann et al. 2011; Kendler et al. 2003; Lazare 1987; Lindner 2000; 2001; Malterud and Hollnagel 2007; Miller 1995; Sanders, Pattison, and Hurwitz 2011; Statman 2000. iii It is important to note that parole and re-­‐entry are not the same thing. ...
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Research on status rejection has developed considerably over the past two decades and is applied in a number of different settings to better understand criminal and deviant behavior. Our research contributes to that body of work by examining the ways in which status rejection may create a potentially humiliating dynamic for individuals on parole. Specifically, we use in-depth interviews with parolees to illustrate how the parolee identity can promote the experience of status rejection and simultaneously foster conditions for humiliation—an emotional state that may impede one's ability to both (re) construct a conventional identity and reintegrate back into one's community.
... gnity might offer guidelines or maxims for applying the ERP. Kant famously offered several such guidelines, including the maxim of never treating people as mere means to one's ends (Kant 1785(Kant /1996. Other possible maxims for applying the ERP include maxims forbidding humiliation, degradation, deprivation of basic liberties, and severe cruelty (Kaufmann, et. al. 2011). Adding such maxims to the ERP makes it less indeterminate, more useful, and a better source of human rights, but it is unclear whether in adding such maxims we are simply explaining its implicit content or bringing in other values and norms to fill in its otherwise indeterminate scope. This raises the unwelcome possibility that norms s ...
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This essay considers possible moral grounds for recognizing and realizing economic and social rights. The essay suggests a pluralistic justificatory framework that appeals to three kinds of moral reasons: human welfare, freedom, and fairness. Forthcoming in the Oxford Handbook of Economic and Social Rights, Malcolm Langford and Katharine G. Young, editors.
... However, there is a difference between forgiving in the context of ordinary offences and in the context of extraordinary events of extreme cruelty such as a massacre, genocide or a torture. The reality of everyday suffering as a product of marginalisation and poverty affects people's physical and psychological welfare, but atrocity has particular effects on people's lives, mainly because it represents extreme cases of violation of people's dignity (Kaufmann et al., 2010). Atrocity challenges our cultural norms for dealing with unbearable suffering (Card, 2002), including our emotional norms that create the social expectation about when we should forgive. ...
Chapter
The African continent has been and continues to be at the epicentre of a global public health crisis. Each year millions of lives in the continent continue to be wasted from diseases preventable with relative ease such as malaria, diarrhoea, tuberculosis (TB), pneumonia, measles, HIV/AIDS, malnutrition, etc. It is the continent where individuals have the lowest life expectancy in the world by any standard of measures. Maternal, under-five and adult mortality rate is the highest in the world. Evidence also show that the continent, sub-Saharan region in particular, is the most food insecure part of the world where over one in four persons are undernourished. In spite of these staggering facts, Africa's average total expenditure on health is one of the lowest in the world. The continent hosts poorly resourced health infrastructures and systems. Ordinary individuals, especially vulnerable persons, in the continent have the least possible access to health care and the underlying determinants of health as well as to other related social protection mechanisms such as social security and health insurance. These all raise very serious issues with the obligations of the States Parties to ensure the right to health for everyone within their jurisdictions. This contribution has accordingly the following two main objectives. The first is to identify the underlying obstacles to the realization of the right to health in the continent. In this respect, it particularly asks the extent to which the alleged lack of resources can be said to explain the inaccessability of health care and the underlying determinants of health. The second is to describe the relevant legal, policy and institutional frameworks available at the African Union (AU) level with the view to assessing their effectiveness in ensuring the right to health. In this regard, it is asked if and to what extent the two principal human rights organs of the AU with remedial powers, the Court and Commission, are able to practically hold the Member States accountable for their gross failures in realizing the right to health. Overall, it emerges from the discussion that the violation of the right to health in the continent is only a mirror of persistent socioeconomic injustices mainly resulting from lack of systemic accountability. This suggests that it is impossible to ensure the effective realization of the right to health without first addressing the structural accountability deficits not just in the health sector but also in the respective socioeconomic and political systems of the Member States as a whole.
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This chapter will explore the concept of “dignity,” with particular reference to its use in the health-care setting. There is a substantial philosophical literature on dignity, both in discussion of its relevance or otherwise to bioethics, and perhaps more fundamentally, as to the precise meaning of the term. The chapter proceeds by introducing the way in which dignity language is used by patients and patient advocates. It is, crucially, a term that non-philosophers find effective in articulating their moral demands and protests. The chapter will then review the use of the term in international and national policy documents, before reviewing a number of core positions in the philosophical debate. Ruth Macklin’s rejection of the concept of “dignity,” as at best reducible to the more fundamental concept of autonomy, provides a stepping-off point. Defenders of dignity may be seen to take a number of different tactics. A “metaphysical” conception, as found most influentially by Kant, argues forcefully that dignity is a mark of the moral status of humans regardless of any empirically perceptible capacities or qualities they may possess. Other philosophers (such as Nussbaum) either seek to link dignity to empirically identifiable capabilities or to differentiate and articulate diverse uses of the term, thereby untangling moral arguments and identifying core or dominant senses. Running through these debates are a series of problems that affect the dignity of the patient. Most importantly, there lies the problem of respecting patients who either are unwilling or unable to assert their own dignity claims. These may be patients whose subjective sense of dignity has been so eroded that they no longer recognize themselves to be worthy of dignified treatment; others may have lost the capacity for autonomous action altogether. The worth of the language of dignity, and of different accounts of dignity, may be seen to be tested by their applicability to such cases.
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Eine Kultur der Menschenrechte ist auf deren Anerkennung durch die Individuen angewiesen. Inwieweit Menschenrechte verstanden, akzeptiert und bei Urteilen über Normenkonflikte beachtet werden, wurde in einem DFG-Projekt untersucht. Leitend war die Frage, wie junge Christen und Muslime (n=89) Menschenrechte bewerten und wie sie Szenarien beurteilen, in denen Rechte und religiöse Gebote im Konflikt stehen.
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In recent years, the concept of human dignity has become an important resource for debates in bioethics. The most important form is personal dignity, a norm or value, which typically is attributed to individual human beings. This kind of dignity protects its bearer in important ways; it cannot be alienated but only violated, and its basic form is possessed by all of its bearers to the same degree. Any adequate theory of human dignity must define the rights and other norms this notion comprises, elaborating the quality or qualities that ground its attribution to beings and the specific goods or interests it protects. While some conceptions of human dignity seek to empower their bearers by equipping them with various rights, thereby increasing their autonomy, others require of the bearers duties to themselves in addition, thereby restricting their possible choices. Both conceptions of dignity as empowerment and dignity as constraint are at play in contemporary bioethical debates on abortion, assisted suicide, organ sale and human enhancement.
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The view that governments should actively promote the happiness of their citizens is gaining considerable popularity. Politicians and policymakers have joined forces with scientists who believe that recent scientific advances can be used to increase societal happiness levels and thereby improve the quality of human life. Whether governments should regard the direct promotion of happiness as a legitimate goal for public policy is, however, not a scientific, but a normative question, and many prominent authors in the history of political thought have considered the idea that governments should seek to promote societal happiness only to conclude that it ought to be rejected. In the current political turn toward happiness such opposing views have received very little attention. This paper canvasses possible reasons to be wary of the current political commitment to happiness, arguing that many of these reasons point toward genuine concerns that have not been given the level of attention they warrant and, therefore, should be taken far more seriously than presently fashionable.
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In this article, I examine everyday ways in which residents of Madurai, Tamil Nadu work to gain and maintain recognition as middle class. In the intersubjective production of identities, people define not only what it takes to be a member of a specific local class category, but also what it means to be treated as fully human. I explore the critical importance of visibility and recognition in daily life, and the modes and meanings of the consumption through which people strive to achieve them. Focusing on two key consumption practices—presenting oneself in public according to local standards of ‘decency’ and marking class belonging through one fetishised consumer good, the cell phone—I consider the relationships among visual apprehension, counting as a social being and dignity.
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This article explores the complexities of gender-based violence in post-apartheid South Africa and interrogates the socio-political issues at the intersection of class, ‘race’ and gender, which impact South African women. Gender equality is up against a powerful enemy in societies with strong patriarchal traditions such as South Africa, where women of all ‘races’ and cultures have been oppressed, exploited and kept in positions of subservience for generations. In South Africa, where sexism and racism intersect, black women as a group have suffered the major brunt of this discrimination and are at the receiving end of extreme violence. South Africa’s gender-based violence is fuelled historically by the ideologies of apartheid (racism) and patriarchy (sexism), which are symbiotically premised on systemic humiliation that devalues, and debases whole groups of people and renders them inferior. It is further argued that the current neo-patriarchal backlash in South Africa foments and sustains the subjugation of women and casts them as both victims and perpetuators of pervasive patriarchal values. Keywords: gender, patriarchy, sexism, violence, racism, humiliation
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This article seeks to explore why, 21 years after apartheid, South Africans are so violent and why crime, even petty crime, is unique because of its extraordinary level of violence. This article seeks to interrogate the role of humiliation in extreme violence and its devastating consequences for an emerging democracy. The article discusses the psycho-political theories and approaches that inform the theoretical perspective adopted, and explores the historical and patriarchal roots of entrenched humiliation in South Africa. It engages with the 'humiliation dynamic' to explore the ongoing and escalating violence in South African society. The article concludes that systemic humiliation, peculiar to South Africa and its apartheid history, is central in understanding extraordinary violence. Humiliation, deeply-rooted in the landscape of social memory, endures and is fuelled by the frustration of human rights, which leads to further and more extreme forms of violence and crime.
Article
The present study tested whether the attribution of humanness by means of a minimal humanity cue is sufficient for the occurrence of empathic neural reactions towards non-human entities that are painfully stimulated. Vegetables have been used as a control condition to explore empathy towards humans’ pain before. In the context of the present study, they were given a minimal humanity cue (i.e., a human name) or not (i.e., an adjective). Human associations with these different types of vegetables were measured and where either represented: pricked by a needle (painful condition) or touched by a Q-tip (touch condition) while recording electroencephalographic activity from a sample of 18 healthy students. Event-related potentials (ERP) indicated that those participants classified as high humanizers, showed an increased neural reaction when vegetables with a name were painfully rather than neutrally stimulated compared to vegetables without a name. These reactions occurred both in an early (P2: 130-180 ms) and a later (P3: 360-540 ms) ERP time-window. Moreover, this differential reaction on the P3 significantly correlated with participants’ explicit empathic tendencies. Overall, these findings suggest that empathy can be triggered for non-human entities as long as they are seen as minimally human.
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DEHUMANIZATION AND DEPOLITICIZATION The paper takes up the issue of “depoliticization” through dehumanization. The starting point is the belief that phenomena of “politicization” and “political” are relatively well recognized in scientific literature, however the problem of depoliticization have not yet been adequately explored. The concept of depoliticization refers to the conditions, criteria, and mechanisms that are key to reducing or depriving a given phenomenon of its political status. Depoliticization does not mean (or at least does not have to mean) an effective removal of the phenomenon from the political sphere, but rather circumstances or actions whose political impact is not obvious. The article focuses on the issue of depoliticization through dehumanization, and more specifically, on how denial of full humanness of groups allows to reduce their status as a political subject, and thus to recognize their claims or interests as not proper or not adequate to political debate. The issues of relations between the processes of humanization and political subjectification as well as dehumanization and political objectification are also discussed.
Thesis
Dans notre société les femmes sont souvent réduites à leur apparence physique (i.e. elles sont objectivées) et sont la cible de différentes conduites sexistes. Le sexisme et l’objectivation de la femme sont fortement véhiculés par les médias et plus particulièrement par les jeux vidéo. Nous savons que les jeux vidéo peuvent influencer les conduites des joueurs, mais l’influence des jeux vidéo sur la vision négative de la femme est assez mal connue. Dans cette thèse nous étudions une possible relation entre l’utilisation des jeux vidéo sexistes et la vision négative de la femme, et nous nous intéressons aux processus psychologiques impliqués dans cette relation. Notre hypothèse est que les jeux vidéo sexistes puissent avoir la fonction d’amorce et rendre accessible en mémoire du joueur des représentations liées au soi, ou à la femme, qui peuvent par la suite influencer ses conduites. Nous proposons également que les hommes, ou les personnes qui s’identifient davantage avec le personnage principal du jeu soient les plus influencés par le contenu sexiste des jeux vidéo. Dans trois études, nous montrons qu’une utilisation habituelle des jeux vidéo est associée à une vision stéréotypique, ou moins humaine de la femme, cependant nous ne montrons pas que les hommes soient plus influencés que les femmes. Ainsi, dans les études qui suivent nous testons le rôle modérateur de l’identification avec le personnage principal. Nous montrons que les joueurs qui s’identifient le plus avec le personnage principal associent davantage leur concept de soi à la masculinité et donnent une plus grande importance à l’apparence de la femme plutôt qu’à ses compétences. Nous mettons en évidence que jouer avec un extrait du jeu vidéo sexiste amène les joueurs à plus associer le concept de la femme à celui d’objet (et cela d’autant plus qu’ils s’identifient au personnage principal), cependant lors de la dernière étude nous ne parvenons pas à répliquer ces résultats. Dans leur ensemble, ces travaux montrent qu’une utilisation habituelle des jeux vidéo influence négativement la vision de la femme. Ces études nous montrent également l’importance de s’intéresser à l’identification au personnage principal comme variable modératrice et nous encouragent à considérer le contenu des jeux vidéo sexistes comme une amorce qui rend accessibles des représentations mentales liées au soi ou à la femme.
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Following on from the publication of its Feasibility Study in December 2020, the Council of Europe's Ad Hoc Committee on Artificial Intelligence (CAHAI) and its subgroups initiated efforts to formulate and draft its Possible Elements of a Legal Framework on Artificial Intelligence, based on the Council of Europe's standards on human rights, democracy, and the rule of law. This document was ultimately adopted by the CAHAI plenary in December 2021. To support this effort, The Alan Turing Institute undertook a programme of research that explored the governance processes and practical tools needed to operationalise the integration of human right due diligence with the assurance of trustworthy AI innovation practices. The resulting framework was completed and submitted to the Council of Europe in September 2021. It presents an end-to-end approach to the assurance of AI project lifecycles that integrates context-based risk analysis and appropriate stakeholder engagement with comprehensive impact assessment, and transparent risk management, impact mitigation, and innovation assurance practices. Taken together, these interlocking processes constitute a Human Rights, Democracy and the Rule of Law Assurance Framework (HUDERAF). The HUDERAF combines the procedural requirements for principles-based human rights due diligence with the governance mechanisms needed to set up technical and socio-technical guardrails for responsible and trustworthy AI innovation practices. Its purpose is to provide an accessible and user-friendly set of mechanisms for facilitating compliance with a binding legal framework on artificial intelligence, based on the Council of Europe's standards on human rights, democracy, and the rule of law, and to ensure that AI innovation projects are carried out with appropriate levels of public accountability, transparency, and democratic governance.
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Angesichts von Menschenwürdeverletzungen stellt sich die philosophisch bislang kaum behandelte Frage nach der Würde der Täterinnen und Täter: Kann man der jeweils eigenen Würde schaden, indem man die Würde anderer verletzt? Im Anschluss an Pufendorf und Kant wird folgende These vertreten: Die Menschenwürde basiert auf der Überzeugung menschlicher Gleichwertigkeit. Wer die Würde anderer missachtet, deren Gleichwertigkeit als Mensch bestreitet und sich damit über diesen Menschen erhebt, kann entsprechend auch kein Gespür für die eigene Gleichwertigkeit und damit die eigene Würde haben. Entweder haben alle Menschen den gleichen Wert, bloß weil sie Menschen sind – oder sie haben alle gleichermaßen keinen.
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Low-skilled migrants in wealthy receiving states are routinely subordinated across a range of social contexts. There is a rich philosophical literature on the inferiorizing effects of “crimmigration”—that is, the growing criminalization of unauthorized migrants and the state’s use of uniquely harsh law enforcement methods against them. Yet there is less interest in the existing racialized division of migrant labor. Low-skilled Latino/a/x migrants disproportionately perform “dirty” and “difficult” work that citizens do not wish to perform. Theoretically, this division of labor is compatible with a more permissive immigration system that legally admitted far larger numbers of low-skilled migrants to continue “doing the dirty work.” Indeed, many have assumed the desirability of such a system. Against this, I argue that “crimmigration” and the racialized division of migrant labor cannot be conceptually disentangled. Rather, they are mutually constitutive in reproducing background conditions that constrain the social equality of low-skilled migrants, as well as others perceived to be such. “Crimmigration” has not only excluded migrants, but enabled states to include them on socially unequal terms: as an instrumental and fungible source of cheap labor. Drawing on Alasia Nuti’s (2019) valuable observation that “banal” historical mechanisms like stereotypes and social scripts can play a crucial role in maintaining present-day injustice, I show that stereotypes of migrants as workers in low-skilled occupations, as well as the expectation that they continue to take on those jobs, also profoundly undermine immigration justice.
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Being one of the badly affected nations by the novel coronavirus, the Indian government had rolled out a set of strategies to contain the transmission. While measures like the lockdown inflicted significant damage on many sections of society, the interstate migrant labourers’ plight across India was nothing less than disastrous. While the privileged sections of the society could afford the strict restrictions laid down by the state, the migrant labourers stuck in different parts of the country found themselves to be second class citizens. This research is an ethical discourse on the human dignity of migrant labourers in a welfare state during the pandemic context. Data gathered from reports on the subject matter in media licensed by the state were analysed under the theoretical lens of violation of human dignity. The outcome of the research involves a critical appraisal of the human dignity of the marginalised in a so-called modern welfare state.
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The modern “digitalized” person is predominantly an object of information, to a lesser extent a subject and an agent of information. The digitalization of the individual manifests itself in the expansion of all sorts of rating systems through which the employer controls the employee and social media monitors people’s daily lives. The phenomenon of “digitalized man” brings us back to the idea of dualism: the man of the modern information society is objectively bifurcated into a biopsychic organism, on the one hand, and his “digital replica”, on the other. Niklas Luhmann proved by his way of life the possibility of a paradoxical synthesis between the idea of mechanistic (bureaucratic) functionality and the idea of spontaneous, intuitive insight inherent only in a living person.
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This paper addresses the conditions that need to be met for a human being to feel or, conversely, not to feel guilty of a wrongdoing against another human being. It does this in the light of Jaspers’ understanding of metaphysical guilt as arising from inter-human solidarity. My claim is twofold. First, I claim that, while metaphysical guilt is not impossible, Jaspers does not offer an explanation of how it arises either in the Question of German guilt (Jaspers 2000) or in his other work on guilt in general. Secondly, despite metaphysical guilt’s existence, it is, nevertheless, common for humans not to experience it, a phenomenon which Jaspers implicitly acknowledges but does not explain explicitly. I apply Axel Honneth’s concept of recognition in order to supply the social component and the theory of dehumanisation to explain why, under some circumstances, metaphysical guilt does not arise.
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Die Kriegführung im 21. Jahrhundert ist geprägt durch den wachsenden Einsatz von Hochtechnologie. Kennzeichnend hierfür sind die kontinuierlich zunehmende Digitalisierung und die immer weiter steigenden Fähigkeiten von Software, Code und Computersystemen insgesamt. Unbemannte Systeme, die auf Basis eines Wegpunktnetzes in ein Einsatzgebiet fliegen können, Schwärme von unbemannten Luftfahrzeugen, die Aufgaben und Operationen in Arbeitsteilung erledigen und Cyber-Tools, die schon heute größere Schäden als manche konventionellen Waffensysteme anrichten können, sind nur ein kleiner Ausschnitt der heutigen technischen Möglichkeiten. All diesen Mitteln der Kriegführung ist bislang gemein, dass der Mensch die Kriegführung in der Regel fernsteuert oder fernüberwacht.
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This paper presents a part of the results of a research project named "Prisoners' Rights. Romania in the European Context", conducted at the Institute of Sociology of the Romanian Academy, between November 2015 and September 2017. Given the novelty of our study for Romania, we have considered an exploratory data analysis as a feasible methodology, able to objectively highlight and model our findings. Based on the perception of the sociological inquiry respondents (N = 557), the main causes of the violation of their right to a decent life in penitentiary were identified to be overcrowding, disinterest on the part of the state and old infrastructure of penitentiaries. From a statistical point of view, the Pearson's chi square test indicated significant or highly significant associations between most of the causes of the breaching the prisoners' right to decent living.
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The present paper focused on the objectification of Pakistani female celebrities on social media especially Facebook. The comments under the viral pictures of Mahira Khan, Mariyam Nawaz and Malala Yousafzai were analyzed by adopting the objectification framework of Nussbaum and Langton. Fifty comments about each female celebrity appearing under their viral pictures were analyzed by using the technique of quantitative content analysis. Total sample consisted of 150 comments from Facebook users of both the genders, i.e. males and females. It was observed that there was an abundance of remarks under the pictures of these celebrities where objectification was at work in some way or the other. Reduction to appearance remained the most frequently occurring variable of objectification. It was also observed that though these comments were coming from people of both the genders but male users of Facebook appeared more hostile in this regard. It is suggested on the basis of the results obtained through the current research that FIA needs to formulate a more strict policy regarding online trolling and shaming.
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The present article is devoted to illustrate the issue of the model-based and extra-theoretical dimension of cognition from the perspective of the famous discovery of non-Euclidean geometries. This case study is particularly appropriate because it shows relevant aspects – creative – of diagrammatic cognition, which involve intertwined processes of both explanatory and non-explanatory abduction. These processes act at the model-based level taking advantage of what I call mirror and unveiling diagrams. A description of important abductive heuristics is also provided: expansion of scope strategy, Euclidean/non-Euclidean model matching strategy, consistency-searching strategy.
Article
Kant introduces a duty to oneself to respect oneself and to avoid servility – or not to make oneself a worm . I argue for a wider understanding of this duty: Persons ought to respect their own dignity as persons with autonomy, rationality, and morality (A), but also as personalities, who embody dignity and live a dignified life (B). A corresponds to Kant’s concept of duty as the necessity of an action done out of respect for the moral law, B is an obligation arising from the practical necessity that follows from one’s self-understanding as an individual personality in a socio-cultural context. A and B relate to two types of dignity that are discussed in current debates. I argue that both types of dignity are equally relevant for understanding and respecting one’s own dignity. Finally I discuss why, even though persons can behave like worms, others ought not to step on them.
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This chapter offers a general introduction to the subject of human dignity in the literature in African philosophy. To do so, it does the following. It begins by specifying the two aims of the book. It proceeds to discuss various aspects related to the concept of human dignity in moral philosophy: (1) its contested nature; (2) the different senses associated with it and (3) its importance in moral and political philosophy. Next, it considers the onto-moral resources posited as the basis for human dignity in the literature in African philosophy – vitality, community and personhood. Finally, it highlights the three themes in applied ethics that will be considered in the book.
Article
This article considers the implications of jus in bello for jus post bellum by exploring the relevant differences between victims of different sides in World War II: the Jewish Holocaust victims and the German civilians bombed by the Allied air forces. Some assert a moral equivalence between the catastrophes these two groups endured [Appleyard, Bryan. (2017). “I’m a Holocaust Sleuth.” The Weekend Australian Magazine, April 8–9: 27–28]. Although we do not dispute that German civilians suffered as victims of Allied aerial bombings, we do question the depiction of their suffering as morally equivalent to the Holocaust of European Jewry. Much of the German war effort was directed at exterminating Jews. Likewise, much of the Allied war effort was directed at bombing German civilians. Both were wicked acts. But they embody very different goals, which were achieved by employing very different means. We present three factors that consider those different goals and means, thereby demonstrating that the Nazis’ victimisation of Jews was far worse than the Allies’ victimisation of German civilians. We conclude by urging military ethicists to learn from the past and to recognise that the treatment of the victims of war has implications for later generations.
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