Aesthetics of Human Rights: Images that provoke citizenship

  • João Motta-Guedes Nova Law School
Keywords: Keywords: Aesthetics – Art – Images – Human Rights – Legal Philosophy – Citizenship


The main problem that I present in this text is to know to what extent an aesthetics of human rights can move people to fight for rights, contributing to a change in the social, legal and political paradigm, which configures aesthetics as a force that is both reflective and transforming societies and law through the exercise of citizenship.

Recognizing that the process of law formation is composed of rational and emotional elements, this essay explores how aesthetics can contribute to law formation through the analysis of authors and images that demonstrate its legal-political nature, and explains how the reception of images moves the people to fight for rights. It is through a theory of the image act that configures images as acts, but it is also through the analysis of the idea of ​​a “sociological aesthetics of law, that the relationship between aesthetics and its ability to provoke emotions in people is understood, which consequently moves the people to fight for a change of legal paradigm, summoning in this process both images that represent the law and images that criticize it.

For these reasons, this essay proposes a Theory of Legal Image as part of an Aesthetics of Human Rights that explains how the received images move people to fight for rights.


How to Cite
Motta-Guedes, J. (2022). Aesthetics of Human Rights: Images that provoke citizenship. HUMANITIES AND RIGHTS GLOBAL NETWORK JOURNAL, 4(2).
Dossier Art and Law - Special Editor: Georges MARTYN