European Conquest and the Rights of Indigenous Peoples: The by Paul Keal

By Paul Keal

Paul Keal examines the historic position of overseas legislations and political idea in justifying the dispossession of indigenous peoples as a part of the growth of foreign society. sarcastically, he argues, legislations and political concept can now shape the root of the restoration of indigenous rights. Arguing for the popularity of indigenous peoples as "peoples" with definitely the right of self-determination in constitutional and foreign legislations, Keal questions the ethical legitimacy of overseas society and examines strategies of collective guilt and accountability.

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Extra resources for European Conquest and the Rights of Indigenous Peoples: The Moral Backwardness of International Society

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34 Bringing ‘peoples’ into international society Contrary to this claim, Murray Forsyth has argued that ‘the close identity of international law with the mutual definition of states’ rights’, up to at least 1914, ‘did not mean that individual rights were ignored . . On the contrary . . ’ In support of this claim he refers to a ‘growing tendency . . to equate the “true” state not only with the attribute of sovereignty, but with the protection of the individual rights of life, liberty, and property’.

86. , p. 149. , p. 150. Introduction it was not a simple tale of subjugation and denial. Further, at its apogee European dominated international society was a society of empires. Contemporary international society, in which Europe has become much less important, continues nevertheless, in important cases, to be a society of empires marked by cultural misunderstanding. The chapter closes by defining the principal legal terms used in substantiating claims to sovereign rights over people and territory and then explaining the legal and political significance of using the term ‘peoples’ rather than the singular ‘people’.

The right of self-determination is one held by groups and in some cases this might undermine the essential character of human rights. The chapter closes with a discussion of some indigenous perspectives on self-determination and suggestions that sovereignty needs to be uncoupled from the state if indigenous peoples are ever to recover fully authorship of their identity. Chapter 5 shifts the focus to three political and moral issues resulting from conquest and the subjugation of indigenous peoples.

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