The chapter offers an overview of the book starting with a summary of the history of Ainu, Zainichi, and Burakumin before posing the core puzzle of the book. It then examines literatures on the history of global human rights and their impact on local social movements, and situates the book’s approach in the broader scholarly approaches in the studies of social movements, human rights, and globalization. It then points to the three key theoretical contributions of the book: (1) the transformative impact of global human rights on local actors, (2) subnational variations in how global human rights affect local politics, and (3) the feedback mechanisms through which local movements influence global human rights institutions.
Keywords: Japanese minority, global human rights, Ainu, Zainichi (Koreans in Japan), Burakumin, world society approach, institutionalism, political opportunities, resource mobilization, framing, human rights history
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