Institute of Commonwealth Studies

January 3, 2016
The Overseas Service Pensioners' Association (OSPA) was founded in 1960, with the primary object of the protection of the pension arrangements for Overseas Service officers and widows. But the chief interest now is in spreading a better understanding of what the Colonial Service (since 1954 properly called Her Majesty's Overseas Civil Service - HMOCS) was, who its members were, what they did, why and how they did it, and to what effect. More generally, what was their life like? This information needs to be out on public record so that people today and in the future can know about and have access to first hand evidence of how the colonial territories were governed and developed in the closing years of Empire, especially after 1945.
Jennifer Melvin
December 1, 2015
In July 1994, the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) set out to stabilise and secure Rwanda, a country decimated by genocide. This mandate was later extended to include the herculean task of promoting unity and reconciliation to a population torn apart by violence. More than two decades later, these goals appear to have been achieved. Beneath the veneer of reconciliation lies myriad programmes and legislation that do more than seek to unite the population - they keep the RPF in power. In Reconciling Rwanda: Unity, Nationality and State Control, Jennifer Melvin analyses the highly controversial RPF and its vision of reconciliation to determine who truly benefits from the construction of the new post-genocide Rwanda.
Edited by Corinne Lennox
October 27, 2015
To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the MA in Understanding and Securing Human Rights offered at the School of Advanced Study, University of London, we are pleased to publish a commemorative edited volume on human rights themes authored by distinguished alumni and faculty.  The chapters reflect on cutting-edge challenges in the field of human rights. Topics include refugee protection, women’s human rights, business and human rights, the role of national and international legal mechanisms and emerging themes such as tax justice, rights in the digital age, theories of change, and poetry.It is a credit to the MA programme that the chapters are rich with critical analysis, diverse expertise and innovative approaches.This book will be...
Colin Samson
November 30, 2014
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Sue Onslow
March 24, 2014
Edited by Helle Abelvik-Lawson, Anthony Hett, and Laila Sumpton
October 1, 2013
In Protest: 150 Poems for Human Rights is an anthology of new poetry exploring human rights and social justice themes. This collection, a collaboration between the Human Rights Consortium at the School of Advanced Study, University of London, and the Keats House Poets, brings together writing that is often very moving, frequently touching, and occasionally humorous. The 150 poems included here come from over 16 countries, and provide a rare insight into experiences of oppression, discrimination, and dispossession - and yet they also offer strong messages of hope and solidarity. This anthology brings you contemporary works that are truly outstanding for both their human rights and poetic content.Arranged across thirteen themes - Expression...
Edited by Corinne Lennox and Matthew Waites
May 30, 2013
Human rights in relation to sexual orientation and gender identity are at last reaching the heart of global debates. Yet 78 states worldwide continue to criminalise same-sex sexual behaviour, and due to the legal legacies of the British Empire, 42 of these – more than half – are in the Commonwealth of Nations. In recent years many states have seen the emergence of new sexual nationalisms, leading to increased enforcement of colonial sodomy laws against men, new criminalisations of sex between women and discrimination against transgender people.  Human Rights, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity in The Commonwealth: Struggles for Decriminalisation and Change challenges these developments as the first book to focus on experiences of...
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Sue Onslow
January 1, 2013
Edited by Simon Bennett and Eadaoin O'Brien
December 10, 2012
The countries of the global north and west that have enjoyed hegemonic preponderance in international affairs over the last two centuries are seeing their relative influence on the world stage decline in favour of rising powers of other regions. As the ability of the global north and west to project normative standards with regards to social organisation, international relations and the role of the state is waning, what emerging norms might guide future trajectories for global society? As human rights is a highly politicised and contentious area of discourse and practice, what future might there be for human rights in a non-western world? The London Debates 2011 workshop sought to bring together established academics and early career...

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