The Right to Housing

Law, Concepts, Possibilities

By Jessie Hohmann

A human right to housing represents the law's most direct and overt protection of housing and home. Unlike other human rights, through which the home incidentally receives protection and attention, the right to housing raises housing itself to the position of primary importance. However, the meaning, content, scope, and even existence of a right to housing raise vexing questions. Drawing on insights from disciplines including law, anthropology, political theory, philosophy, and geography, this book is both a contribution to the state of knowledge on the right to housing and an entry into the broader human rights debate. It addresses profound questions on the role of human rights in belonging and citizenship, the formation of identity, the perpetuation of forms of social organization, and, ultimately, of the relationship between the individual and the State. The book addresses the legal, theoretical, and conceptual issues, providing a deep analysis of the right to housing within and beyond human rights law. Structured in three parts, it outlines the right to housing in international law and in key national legal systems; it examines the key concepts of housing: space, privacy, and identity; and, finally, it looks at the potential of the right to alleviate human misery, marginalization, and deprivation. The book represents a major contribution to the scholarship on an under-studied and ill-defined right. In approach, it offers a new framework for argument within which the right to housing - as well as other under-theorized and contested rights - can be reconsidered, reconnecting human rights with the social conditions of their violation, and, hence, with the reasons for their existence. [Subject: Human Rights Law, Property Law]

286 pages

Publication Date: 3/1/2013
Format: Cloth
ISBN: 9781849461535

Available in other formats