UN Voices

UN Voices

The Struggle for Development and Social Justice
Thomas G. Weiss, Tatiana Carayannis, Louis Emmerij, and Richard Jolly
Foreword by Emma Rothschild
Distribution: World
Publication date: 5/19/2005
ISBN: 978-0-253-11058-9
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Description

2006 AAUP Public and Secondary School Libary selection
“The authors have cajoled, intrigued, or reassured their 73 ‘voices’ into telling a fascinating story of the UN and its institutions, which is also a story of 73 individual lives, of women and men . . . with their own complicated histories of emigration and education, family relationships and professional choices, hopes and successes.” —from the Foreword by Emma Rothschild

“Far from being a distant bureaucracy, the UN is composed of individuals who are reshaped by vital experiences.
UN Voices gives international civil servants human faces and shows how ideas drive the grand experiment. It is a fascinating book.” —Arthur Schlesinger, Jr.

UN Voices presents the human and moving stories of an extraordinary group of individuals who contributed to the economic and social record of the UN’s life and activities. Drawing from extensive interviews, the book presents in their own words the experiences of 73 individuals from around the globe who have spent much of their professional lives engaged in United Nations affairs. We hear from secretaries-general and presidents, ministers and professors, social workers and field workers, as well as diplomats and executive heads of UN agencies. Among those interviewed are noted figures such as Kofi Annan, Boutros Boutros-Ghali, Alister McIntyre, Conor Cruise O’Brien, Javier Pérez de Cuéllar, and Kurt Waldheim, as well as many less well known UN professional men and women who have made significant contributions to the international struggle for a better world. Their personal accounts also engage their contributions in dealing with such events and issues as the UN’s founding, decolonization, the rise and fall of the Berlin Wall, human rights, the environment, and September 11, 2001.

Author Bio

Thomas G. Weiss is Presidential Professor of Political Science at The CUNY Graduate Center and Director of its Ralph Bunche Institute for International Studies.

Tatiana Carayannis is Research Manager of the United Nations Intellectual History Project.

Louis Emmerij is Senior Research Fellow at The CUNY Graduate Center’s Ralph Bunche Institute for International Studies.

Richard Jolly is Senior Research Fellow at The CUNY Graduate Center’s Ralph Bunche Institute for International Studies and Professor Emeritus at the University of Sussex.

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Table of Contents

Contents
Foreword
Acknowledgments
List of Abbreviations
Introduction
Part One. Individuals Make a Difference
1. Growing Up
The Great Depression and the Demise of the League of Nations • World War II • Faith and Family Matters
2. Formal Education
Education at Home • Studying Abroad
3. Serendipity and International Careers
Mentors Opening Doors • Advanced Studies as a Gateway • Post-University Homecomings • Starting Out in Teaching and Research • Beginning in National Public Service • Juggling Family and Professional Life
Part Two. Hope, Creativity, and Frustration
4. From 1945 through the 1950s: Hope Held High
The Establishment of the United Nations • The Universal Declaration of Human Rights • The Marshall Plan • The Cold War • McCarthyism • Decolonization and the Non-Aligned Movement • The UN Regional Commissions
5. The 1960s: Widening Development Avenues
The First Development Decade • UNCTAD and the Group of 77 • Technical Cooperation: The Road to the UNDP • Influence of the Major Powers
6. The 1970s: Creativity Confronts Geopolitics
The Environment and Sustainability • Oil Shocks and the NIEO • Transnational Corporations • The Least Developed Countries • Basic Needs and Redistribution • Women and Gender
7. The 1980s: Development Frustrated
Death of the North-South "Dialogue" • The Debt Crisis and Adjustment: A Lost Decade • The Washington "Consensus" • The End of the Cold War and the Socialist Model
8. The 1990s and the Dawn of the Twenty-First Century: Renaissance and Reform?
Globalization • Human Development • Human Security and the Responsibility to Protect • Global Governance and the Millennium Development Goals
Part Three. The World Organization, Ideas, and Twenty-First-Century Challenges
9. A Revolutionary Idea: The International Civil Service
Good Old Days? • Cold War Diversions • Geographical Representation • Women at the UN • Organizational Culture • Reform Difficulties
10. The Power of Ideas and People inside the UN
Leadership • The Secretaries-General • Tensions in the System • Country Groups and International Negotiations
11. Blending Outside Intellectual Energies
Outside Academics and Consultants • Independent Commissions of Eminent Persons • Nongovernmental Organizations and the Private Sector • Global Conferences
12. The Legacy and Future Intellectual Challenges
Ideas Change International Discourse • Ideas Redefine State and Nonstate Interests and Goals • Ideas Facilitate New Coalitions • Ideas Become Embedded in Institutions • The UN's Future Intellectual Challenges
Annex 1. Biographical Notes of Persons Interviewed
Annex 2. A Methodological Note: Making This Oral History
Notes
Index of Persons Interviewed
Index of Subjects
About the Authors
About the United Nations Intellectual History Project