Editors' Introduction

AuthorShaheen Azmi, Lorne Foster, Lesley Jacobs
Editors’ Introduction
Shaheen Azmi, Lorne Foster, Lesley Jacobs
In the context of globalization, diversity has become an increas-
ingly valued characteristic of contemporary societies. Diverse so-
cieties are viewed as remarkable for their variety in terms of re-
ligious practices, spoken languages, ethnicities, sexualities, and
expressions of multiculturalisms. Such societies are said to allow
for a measure of openness and adaptability that enable them
    
demands of a global economy.
Yet, as societies have embraced and indeed aspire towards
diversity, certain challenges and tensions have become visible
that were not fully anticipated. This book focuses on one of those
challenges, the challenge of balancing competing human rights
claims. The practice of human rights has taken on increasing
complexity in Canada and other diverse societies because more
and more often around the world the claim to a right of one in-
dividual or group directly affects the claim to the human rights
of another group. Such competing human rights claims can be
played out in many places, from the classroom to workplaces,
from the public square to the international stage, wherever indi-
viduals or groups actively claim the recognition of rights that may
interfere with the access to rights of others.
Examples of these sorts of competing human rights should
be familiar to all of us. Think about religious individuals or organi-
zations that object on the grounds of the right to religious beliefs

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