This unique book traces common perspectives within political sociology. However, it adds to the existing field using an intersectional analysis by including state projects around gender, race, and sexuality. Likewise, it engages with commonly ignored perspectives within political sociology such as queer theory, anarchist theory, and post-structuralism. This gives the book a multi-dimensional view that recognizes the need to include, but move beyond, class-based understandings as well as account for the increasing popularity of anarchist, queer, and post-structuralist theories.
Human Rights in Our Own Backyard examines the state of human rights and responses to human rights issues, drawing on sociological literature and perspectives to interrogate assumptions of American exceptionalism. How do people in the U.S. address human rights issues? What strategies have they adopted, and how successful have these strategies been? Essays are organized around key conventions of human rights, focusing on the relationships between human rights and justice, the state and the individual, civil rights and human rights, and group rights versus individual rights. The contributors are united by a common conception of the human rights enterprise as a process involving not only state-defined and implemented rights but also human rights from below as promoted by activists.