Date: April 3, 2008
Creator: Sowell, Marsha & Meernik, James David
Description: This poster discusses research on torture. Torture violates human rights; a majority of states have ratified the international Convention Against Torture (CAT), but due to lack of enforcement, violations still occur unchecked. This research seeks to explain why states fail to comply with international human rights treaties. The authors suggest threat is the determining factor behind torture; torture is provisional. The threat the authors focus on is the fear states have of their enemies, which could range from another state to a terrorist group. The authors suggest that the level of threat against a state is directly related to the violation of human rights. The authors argue that the more threatened a state feels, the more likely they are to participate in the act of torture. These assumptions will be tested through an empirical and quantitative analysis on the compliance of CAT member states over time. The authors will test their threat-based explanation against other factors that may lead to torture.
Contributing Partner: UNT Honors College