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Instructions

Once you have read the Hajjar chapter and the UDHR, please complete this eResponse by writing concise but thorough answers to all of the following questions.

You must include page numbers in each question–your score will depend on it. I do not require any specific citation format. Just include (author last name, page number) at the end of the relevant sentences. Please note that you must cite when you draw any ideas from the text, whether or not you explicitly quote it. And you must draw your ideas from the text because that is the assignment.

Please be sure that if and when you use a direct quotation from the reading, you also explain what that quotation means in your own words.

Questions (number your answers)

1. What is the “transnational legal space” on which Dale focuses in this chapter?

2. Dale talks about the “discursive ambivalence toward human rights” exhibited by corporate and state actors. What does he mean?

3. What is Falk’s notion of the citizen-pilgrim?

4. What is Falk proposing with his notion of the “global parliament”?

5. For our in-class discussion, please review Falk’s explanation of the horizons of feasibility, horizons of necessity, and horizons of desire. (No need to write anything here; just review for yourself before our class session).

Reply to a classmate

When you have finished posting your numbered answers, please read through and comment on someone else’s post, as well. Your comment should be substantive. If you agree or disagree with their post, explain why with reference to specifics. If you learned something from their post, identify what that is. 

1. What is the “transnational legal space” on which Dale focuses in this chapter?

· The “transnational legal space” that Dale discusses how ‘this space’ essentially has opened up a door for more discourse to take place around human rights, “[challenging] the binary distinction between globalization and the nation-state… [and] insists on the continuing significance of borders, state policies, and national identities” (Dale 4). He explains how this “transnational legal space” has had its struggles and the Doe v. Unocal case is a prime example of that, but it also doesn’t exclude how Myanmar state refused the victory in the 1990 election; the state’s adoption of economic liberalization policy; “consolidation of neo-liberal “free trade” as a hegemonic discourse on globalization as the Cold War was ending; and inpour of foreign investment corps wanting to build a pipeline for natural gas through Burma”” (6). Though there are two other cases, the Doe v. Unocal really put the Free Burman movement into action. The “transnational legal space,” very similar to the Alien Tort Claims Act, allows for civil, legal, political, and moral discourse within the court to take place, assessing crimes or threats against transnational Others to seek justice (9). From what I can tell, the TNL seems to follow along the lines of good development and addresses major issues that on the surface claim to be what we need, but actually harm our societies in vicious ways. An important note is that a lot of this does have to do with the military and their position in power. This reading reminds me a lot of the discussions we had in my Women, Culture, and Development class (highly recommend).

2. Dale talks about the “discursive ambivalence toward human rights” exhibited by corporate and state actors. What does he mean?

· From what I understand, “discursive ambivalence toward human rights,” Dale is stating that the discourse around human rights holds a lot of uncertainty, doubt, division, and overall, a somewhat negative connotation. Understandably, as it holds a fairly universalized and somewhat lacking cultural relativity, or neutralism view. But, he argues that it is big corporations that have put the biggest push back on human rights for their own benefit. It also “reveals a kind of disingenuous support for human rights in Burma” (19). This ties into my comment about military power in the previous question because the foreign investment goes straight to them, rather than supporting the Burma citizens (20). Unfortunately, this is seen across the globe where less powerful states and especially Third World countries are taken advantage of and are faced with poor development because of these massive corps and systems that favor neo-liberal globalization. 

3. What is Falk’s notion of the citizen-pilgrim?

· Falk’s notion of the citizen-pilgrim is a lifelong choice to aim for a ‘better future’ through confronting current injustices for the sake of humanity. One way of summing it up could be his quote here: “realization of world government was preceded by economic, social, and cultural developments that reduced dramatically current levels of material unevenness, poverty, and inter-civilizational antagonisms” (Falk 14). The goal is to achieve “a humane form of global governance” (14). 

4. What is Falk proposing with his notion of the “global parliament”?

· In his notion of “global parliament,” Falk is proposing that we need to prioritize and include citizens, not the states/corps/higher powers, in democracy. His efforts model good development in such that he is urging the focus of people over power, wanting to uplift their voices and include them in important discussions, and work towards a more ethical, moral, and just society. His statement, “… a global parliament is a flexible format that can be initiated modestly. In conception, the establishment of such an institution is a less radical innovation than was the International Criminal Court, which proposes a capacity to hold leaders of sovereign states accountable for certain enumerated crimes,” does a good job summing up the proactiveness and workability of implementing such a parliament (23). This would be an example of cultural relativity.

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