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Denison Journal of Religion

Abstract

Hinkle connects the non-Western world with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, released by the United Nations in 1948. The author disproves the assumption that this declaration is only applicable in the West through the example of Afghani men and women, particularly those who have devoted themselves to the Revolutionary Association of Women of Afghanistan (RAWA.) The crimes being committed against women in Afghanistan were frequently ignored by the wider world, particularly before the United States launched its military campaign there. Feminism, Hinkle argues, has an unfortunate history of believing itself to be a construction of the West, and applicable only in the West. This often leaves non-Western women without allies. This often occurs because Westerners believe that the "cultural heritage" of the non-Western cultures does not allow for its members to believe in feminism. The men and women who have allied themselves with RAWA, Hinkle argues, prove this to be incorrect. These are Middle-Eastern men and women, many of them devout Muslims, who champion the idea of Universal Human Rights. Human rights, therefore, this article makes clear, cannot be limited by elitists to one hemisphere. This attitude allows for individuals to inappropriately disengage themselves from fights for human rights occurring in every part of the world.

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