Journal article Open Access

Alternative Relations Between Nature and Human Rights: decoloniality and the inter-american court of human rights case law

Felipe Costa Lima; Vitória dos Santos Acerbi; Igo Zany Nunes Correa

In the last decade, the debate on environmental protection and its link to human rights has gained momentum worldwide. At the same time, decolonial thought has also been gaining ground in the political, academic, and social agendas. On the one hand, we have been threatening immense and globally important ecosystems; on the other, indigenous, and black peoples have been seeking emancipation. Rooted in this emancipatory thought, we seek to analyse the Inter-American Court of Human Rights progressive jurisprudence to find out to what extent the underlying notions on the relationship between humanity and nature on the Court’s case-law derive from Western’s modern-colonial paradigms, such as sustainable development, or are guided by other perspectives, such as the Andean buen vivir paradigm. We believe that, despite some advances in incorporating concepts that come from the ‘margins’, this court’s case law on environmental rights is still rooted in the western hegemonic tradition.

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