Popular music has long understood that human rights, if attainable at all, involve a struggle without end.
The right to imagine an individual will, the right to some form of self-determination and the right to self-legislation have long been at the forefront of popular music's approach to human rights.
At a time of such uncertainty and confusion, with human rights currently being violated all over the world, a new and sustained examination of cultural responses to such issues is warranted.
In this respect music, which is always produced in a social context, is an extremely useful medium; in its immediacy music has a potency of expression whose reach is long and wide.
Contributors to this significant volume cover artists and topics such as Billy Bragg, punk, Fun-da-Mental, Willie King and the Liberators, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, the Anti-Death Penalty movement, benefit concerts, benefit albums, Gil Scott-Heron, Bruce Springsteen, Wounded Knee and Native American political resistance, Tori Amos, Joni Mitchell, as well as human rights in relation to feminism.
A second volume covers World Music.