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Människovärdet och de mänskliga rättigheterna: En analys av tre perspektiv på människovärdet och de mänskliga rättigheterna
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Theology, Department of Theology.
2015 (Swedish)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]


This study is a critical analysis of three different views on human dignity and its function in the discourse of human rights: that of Christopher McCrudden, Jürgen Habermas and Elena Namli. The three positions are interpreted, analyzed and compared in order to see which is most reasonable.

The conclusion is that Habermas’s and McCrudden’s view of human rights as legal reduces human dignity to a legal concept. Namli’s perspective of human dignity as a moral principle generates a wider understanding of human dignity and its function. As a moral principle, human dignity has the potential both to function rightly in the legal sphere as well as being an ethical tool for critique of all conventional norms in the society.

Habermas makes an important contribution as he transforms the traditional rationalistic Kantian view on human dignity to be applicable in the political and social sphere as it relates to the institutional protection of rights. Namli modifies further the Kantian view, as she considers humanity to be social and as such contextually construed. Human dignity can therefore be used contextually to interpret human rights and guide prioritization between rights. It can further counteract the current tendancy of monopolization of interpretations of human rights.

Habermas’s och Namli’s approach to human dignity as a substantial normative concept, which is universal and egalitarian, is considered more plausible than McCrudden’s view. However, Namli’s perspective is more reasonable than Habermas’s as she acknowledge that human beings have the right to be respected in their humanity only by being humans.


Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. , 68 p.
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-254686OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-254686DiVA: diva2:819374
Subject / course
Human Rights
Educational program
Master Programme in Human Rights
Available from: 2015-06-11 Created: 2015-06-10 Last updated: 2015-06-11Bibliographically approved

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