The IUP Journal of International Relations
Rights-Based Order Under a Multipolar International Regime

Article Details
Pub. Date : April, 2023
Product Name : The IUP Journal of International Relations
Product Type : Article
Product Code : IJIR020423
Author Name : Tanmay Regal
Availability : YES
Subject/Domain : Arts & Humanities
Download Format : PDF Format
No. of Pages : 18



It is argued that potential benefits to governing authority from reaching a stable negentropic-equilibrium of contending interests is an essential prerequisite for establishing and sustaining a rights-based order. This is based on an analysis of similar socioeconomic conditions under which individual rights were recognized under statebased and alternative legal systems. Through this lens, a pattern is discerned in modern history where technological advances through the three stages of Industrial Revolution changed the nature of production and patterns of global trade relations. The postwar political scenario allowed for recognition of human rights that evolved across three generations. However, after the Cold War, political will was subverted by Big Business' influence that increased in democratic countries around the world through overbearing lobbying. A serpentine symbiotic relation developed between democracies and 'autocracies' around common commercial interests unaffected by seemingly adversarial relations between major powers and their allies. As stability has become a secondary interest, the geopolitical environment has turned increasingly hostile for a rights-based order.


Under the present contested world order, the discourse on rights boils down to accusatory debates. What remains unanalyzed is the crisscrossing interests of different power centers (including the states, businesses, military leaders, religious leaders and scientists) which serve as a background in which the rights-based system developed in the 18th century.

How such a system emerges and what it may be contingent upon can be discerned by studying the catalytic role and spread of technology that radically changed the means of economic production and legal systems. Their relationship and the dynamics of their interaction are often ignored. When given due regard, it unveils a greater systemic retardation and spiraling progress of rights-based systems around the world. To approach this issue effectively, this paper examines the evolution of human rights across cultures, especially after the Second World War.

Since they were conceived in their current form, human rights have been closely tied to international relations. Human rights have been shaped by geopolitical forces,