Human Rights: A Reckoning – Book Review

“The Last Utopia” is a revisionist history of human rights. Samuel Moyn rejects the conventional wisdom that human rights surfaced as a reaction to the horrors of World War II, instead insisting that the movement did not emerge until the 1970s. By arguing that human rights achieved prominence only because other idealistic visions “imploded”, Moyn casts human rights as a romanticized afterthought, a movement that has “done far more to transform the terrain of idealism than . . . the world itself.”

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