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Torture and ill-treatment under perceived human rights documentation and the poor

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)393-415
Number of pages22
JournalHuman Rights Quarterly
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 May 2017


This paper addresses the question of how human rights practices seek to know and respond to harm. In particular, we ask what forms of torture and ill-treatment are made legible through human rights documentation? We argue that human rights documentation techniques systematically underperceive the extent and torture of ill-treatment among the poor. The paper is based on research on the documentation of torture and ill-treatment in Kenya, Bangladesh and Nepal, and set out five key predispositions in documentation techniques that result in implicit discrimination.

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