Keepers of the Flame: Understanding Amnesty International. By Stephen Hopgood. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2006. 249p. $49.95 cloth, $19.95 paper.
As human rights promotion gradually comes to rival development and democratization in the Western policy pantheon, more human rights–related books appear each year. Only a minority of these are empirically and methodologically rigorous, however, and even fewer are theoretically adventurous. Stephen Hopgood's unique study of Amnesty International is thus a welcome contribution from a political scientist with anthropological instincts, and it is likely to become a classic in the field. Hopgood immersed himself for over a year in Amnesty's culture, rituals, and politics, and then interpreted this data with insights from Emile Durkheim and Pierre Bourdieu. He writes clearly and well, and his interpretations should appeal to students of transnational organizing, human rights, and international affairs, broadly conceived.
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