Human Rights in the Gold Coast (1945-57)

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Relying on a first-hand investigation of archival and primary sources, the book scrutinizes the formulation of demands for the collective right to self-determination which emanated from nationalist movements, the debates on whether or not to extend the European Convention on Human Rights to the Gold Coast, and the evolution of drafts for a bill of rights in Ghana’s Independence Constitution. The particular and under-privileged position of women in the colony is a subject of critical commentary throughout the book. By examining the emergence of the human rights idea, the study draws attention to the interplay of factors and actors that inspired a new-fangled notion of universal rights, while highlighting the way politics, including Cold War politics, contributed to define the subject of human rights in an ambiguous, incomplete but promising way.