Human Rights Violations, Umbrella Concepts, and Empirical Analysis
Only in last decade or two have political scientists begun sys tematic, cross-national research on government violations of human rights. The primary research focus has been the rights associ ated with the "integrity of the person." At least two factors account for this relatively recent attention: the interest of President Jimmy Carter and Congress in setting human rights as a goal of American foreign policy and the publication of country-by-country accounts of human rights performance by the U.S. Department of State, Amnesty Inter national, and Freedom House. As the issue rose on the political agenda and as data sources for large cross-national analyses became available, scholarly interest quickly developed.1 In this sense, human rights re search has been driven as much by policy priorities and data availability as by theory.
This is an article from World Politics 49 (1997): 510. Posted with permission.