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International Politics on the World Stage, Brief 4/e
World Politics: International Politics on the World Stage, Brief, 4/e
John T. Rourke, University of Connecticut - Storrs
Mark A. Boyer, University of Connecticut - Storrs

Preserving and Enhancing Human Rights and Dignity

Chapter Introduction

As we near the end of this survey of world politics, it is appropriate to pause momentarily to remember that, amid all the sound and fury, politics ought to be about maintaining or improving the quality of life of people. We have been exploring whether the traditional state-based international system that operates on self-interested competition can best protect and enhance humanity or whether the alternative of global cooperation in an international system with reduced sovereignty will lead to a more felicitous future. This and the next chapter continue that inquiry by addressing the human rights and social dignity of the world's people and the condition of the biosphere that they inhabit. First, this chapter will address preserving and enhancing human rights and dignity by looking at efforts to provide for the human body and spirit. Then, Chapter 14 will take up environmental concerns and programs.