Human rights as cornerstone of resilience and empowerment in addressing poverty in Asia in the 21st century

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Abstract

This review article looks at the challenges and opportunities in addressing the issues of human rights and poverty in Asia in the 21st century. From the economic potential perspective, we are living in what has been termed the 'Asian century'. This is because the economic power houses of the industrialized west have been in relative decline while the economic growth in the Asian region has outstripped all other regions in the globe. This growth is not even within countries or between countries. Poverty may therefore be in general decline but it is not eliminated and inequalities within countries may have worsened in countries like Peoples Republic of China. Improving economic circumstances is good for human rights as this paper regards poverty as a human rights issue. Economic growth, however, does not always correlate with improvement in the human rights situation. Some of the leaders in the region have argued that the region needs economic growth and not human rights as understood in the Western countries. The 'Singapore model' is such an approach that favours creating wealth while regarding granting human rights as a threat to rapid economic growth. There are also other threats to human rights in this Asian century including the treatment of minorities, religious intolerance and armed conflicts. The chapter concludes that there are good prospects for improving human rights and reducing poverty but also many challenges along the way.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSome aspects of community empowerment and resilience
EditorsVenkat Pulla, Bharath Bhushan Mamidi
Place of PublicationNew Delhi
PublisherAllied Publishers Private Limited
Chapter10
Pages141-160
Number of pages19
Edition1st
ISBN (Print)9788184249620
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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