Introduction: Does Human Rights Education Exist?

  • Michalinos Zembylas
  • André Keet
Part of the Contemporary Philosophies and Theories in Education book series (COPT, volume 13)


In this introductory chapter, we see it fit to revisit our research and engagement with HRE, trying to make sense of the shifts in our own theorisation to disclose radical-alternative possibilities for thinking and doing HRE. Through telling the story of how we entered the field and started writing about our concerns with HRE, we show the evolution of our thinking that has eventually become the present book. While doing so, we raise a cluster of questions that led us eventually to write this book: Does HRE exist? Did HRE exist before? If it did, how did it ‘disappear?’ If it did not, what is it that goes by the appellation of HRE? To engage with these questions is to work through the appearances of HRE in order to pierce through the surfaces and scenarios of the truths it produces. Such engagement is deeply concerned by what is clustered under its banner, and how its discursive authority is constructed and mobilised to thwart the global project of emancipation.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michalinos Zembylas
    • 1
  • André Keet
    • 2
  1. 1.Open University of CyprusLatsiaCyprus
  2. 2.Nelson Mandela UniversityPort ElizabethSouth Africa

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