Concentrating on South Africa, this chapter critically scrutinises the realisation of everyone's right to life as guaranteed in section 11 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa. Although the right to life is explored within the ambit of an international legal framework, realising the right to life in South Africa, with its history of demeaning the value of the life of the majority of its inhabitants in the past, forms the main pivot of discussion. It is argued that, despite the 1996 Constitution's promise to heal these past divisions and improve the quality of life of all citizens and free each person's potential, the State has been ambivalent about realising everyone's right to life. As part of post‐apartheid transformation, the State has, on the one hand, made substantial progresses in creating a supporting and legal environment for the attainment of a better life for some of its inhabitants. On the other hand, reality still reflects poignantly flaws in freeing everyone's potential, thus highlighting the mammoth task that lies ahead.
Part of the book: Quality of Life and Quality of Working Life
In demarcating the law, human rights, and human behaviour, the objective is to explore the tension between safeguarding human rights and promoting individual autonomy. While international human rights law signifies the potential of creating dignified life experiences, the behaviour of humans, and, specifically, of those in government incited my focus on the effect of human behaviour on the realizsation of human rights. By studying human rights through a philosophical lens, a (a) conceptual clarification of human rights is provided, (b) the most prominent human rights are identified, (c) general and specific justifications of human rights discussed, and (d) the normative implications of human right claims explored. Focus is placed on South Africa although the value and potential generalisation generalization of the data for evaluating the effectiveness of human rights in achieving their social goal globally, are acknowledged. Reviewing literature, an overview is provided of the law and human rights; the different dimensions of human rights; and human behaviour. Persistent human rights violations, albeit legal protection, are delineated and the significant role played by human behaviour during such violations are highlighted. Given that human behaviour is influenced by various ethical, social, and legal principles, governments are urged to be mindful of the well-being of the humans they are ethically and legally obliged to serve.
Part of the book: Education, Human Rights and Peace in Sustainable Development