Humiliation, Degradation, Dehumanization

Human Dignity Violated

  • Paulus Kaufmann
  • Hannes Kuch
  • Christian Neuhaeuser
  • Elaine Webster

Part of the Library of Ethics and Applied Philosophy book series (LOET, volume 24)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xiv
  2. Conceptions and Theories

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 19-19
    2. Paulus Kaufmann, Hannes Kuch, Christian Neuhäuser, Elaine Webster
      Pages 1-5
    3. Christian Neuhäuser
      Pages 21-36
    4. Elaine Webster
      Pages 67-84
  3. Practices of Violating Human Dignity

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 99-99
    2. Andreas Maier
      Pages 101-117
    3. Ivana Radačić
      Pages 119-132
    4. Steffen K. Herrmann
      Pages 133-149
    5. Peter Schaber
      Pages 151-158
    6. Julia Müller, Christian Neuhäuser
      Pages 159-172
    7. Kirsteen Shields
      Pages 173-189
    8. Tamara Enhuber
      Pages 191-212
  4. Conclusions for a Positive Account of Human Dignity

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 213-213
    2. Marcus Düwell
      Pages 215-230
    3. Samuel J. Kerstein
      Pages 231-241
  5. Back Matter
    Pages 263-265

About this book


Degradation, dehumanization, instrumentalization, humiliation, and nonrecognition – these concepts point to ways in which we understand human beings to be violated in their dignity. Violations of human dignity are brought about by concrete practices and conditions; some commonly acknowledged, such as torture and rape, and others more contested, such as poverty and exclusion. This volume collates reflections on such concepts and a range of practices, deepening our understanding of human dignity and its violation, bringing to the surface interrelationships and commonalities, and pointing to the values that are thereby shown to be in danger. In presenting a streamlined discussion from a negative perspective, complemented by conclusions for a positive account of human dignity, the book is at once a contribution to the body of literature on what dignity is and how it should be protected as well as constituting an alternative, fresh and focused perspective relevant to this significant recurring debate. As the concept of human dignity itself crosses disciplinary boundaries, this is mirrored in the unique range of perspectives brought by the book’s European and American contributors – in philosophy and ethics, law, human rights, literature, cultural studies and interdisciplinary research. This volume will be of interest to social and moral philosophers, legal and human rights theorists, practitioners and students.


bonded labor degradation dehumanization embodyment human dignity human rights humiliation instrumentalization labour exploitation non-recognition poverty rape social exclusion torture

Editors and affiliations

  • Paulus Kaufmann
    • 1
  • Hannes Kuch
    • 2
  • Christian Neuhaeuser
    • 3
  • Elaine Webster
    • 4
  1. 1.Ethik-ZentrumUniversität ZürichZürichSwitzerland
  2. 2.SFB Kulturen des PerformativenFU BerlinBerlinGermany
  3. 3.Philosophische Fak., Inst. PhilosophieUniversität PotsdamPotsdamGermany
  4. 4.Law SchoolUniversity of StrathclydeGlasgowUnited Kingdom

Bibliographic information