Freedom's Battle: The Origins of Humanitarian Intervention

TitleFreedom's Battle: The Origins of Humanitarian Intervention
Publication TypeBook
Year of Publication2008
AuthorsBass, Gary
Number of Pages509
PublisherAlfred A. Knopf
CityNew York
Abstract

Why do we sometimes let evil happen to others and sometimes rally to stop it? Whose lives matter to us? These are the key questions posed in this important and perceptive study of the largely forgotten nineteenth-century "atrocitarians"—some of the world's first human rights activists. Wildly romantic, eccentrically educated, and full of bizarre enthusiasms, they were also morally serious people on the vanguard of a new political consciousness. And their legacy has much to teach us about the human rights crises of today. Gary Bass shows that there is a tangled international tradition—reaching back more than two hundred years—of confronting the suffering of innocent foreigners. Bass describes the political and cultural landscapes out of which these activists arose, as an emergent free press exposed Europeans and Americans to atrocities taking place beyond their shores and galvanized them to act. He brings alive a century of passionate advocacy in Britain, France, Russia, and the United States: the fight the British waged against the oppression of the Greeks in the 1820s, the huge uproar against a notorious massacre in Bulgaria in the 1870s, and the American campaign to stop the Armenian genocide in 1915.

Short TitleFreedom's Battle
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183265486

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