Revisiting the idea(l) of global civil society in the light of human rights

AutorAndrés López Rivera
CargoDegree in Human and Social Sciences, with mention in Political Science by Université Lumière Lyon 2, France
Páginas229-242
Ius Humani. Revista de Derecho
Vol. 5 (2016), pp. 229-242. ISSN: 1390-440X eISSN: 1390-7794
Recepción: 15-10-2016. Aceptación: 14-11-2016. Publicación electrónica: 31-12-2016
Ius Humani, vol. 5 (2016), p. 229
REVISITING THE IDEA(L) OF GLOBAL CIVIL SOCIETY IN
THE LIGHT OF HUMAN RIGHTS
REVISITANDO LA IDEA/EL IDEAL DE LA SOCIEDAD CIVIL GLOBAL A LA LUZ DE LOS
DERECHOS HUMANOS
Andrés López Rivera*
Abstract: In the past few decades , the proliferation of a “third sector” of
nongovernmental and non-pr ofit orga nizations tha t operate acr oss borders has
prompted a r eformulation of the concept of civil society. A number of contemporar y
studies contend that the previously state-centric civil society is becoming international,
transnational or global. Whether the emergence of an autonomous realm of wor ld
citizens is merely a projection of a cosmopolitan ideal or a real phenomenon is a
contentious issue. The pr esent article pr oblematizes the idea of a global civil society
by ana lysing its descriptive purchase a nd its normative implications. Drawing on a
constructivist approach, the paper proposes the term “ideational infrastructure” to
analyse its discursive a nd inter pretive under pinnings. The analysis finds that global
civil society is a r eification rooted in human r ights discourse as a contemporar y idea l
and a mora l aspiration.
Keywords: Ideational Infra structure, Reification, Constructivism, Globalization, Law
Evolution
Resumen: En las últimas décadas, la proliferación de un tercer sector conformado
por organizaciones no gubernamentales y sin fines de lucro que trascienden las
fronteras ha propiciado una reformulación del concepto de sociedad civil. Una serie de
estudios contemporáneos sostienen que la sociedad civil estado-céntrica se está
volviendo internacional, transnacional o global. Si la aparición de una esfera autónoma
* Degree in Human and Social Sciences, with mention in Political Science by Université
Lumière Lyon 2 (France) and Master Global Politics by London School of Economics and
Political Science (London). Professor of Social Sciences in Universidad de Los Hemisferios
(Quito, Ecuador). andresl@uhemisferios.edu.ec
This paper was presented in the I Congreso de Derecho & Humanidades en homenaje a Juan
Larrea Holguín, held from June 30 to July 2, 2016. The paper fulfills the requirements of the
double blind peer review procedure.

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