Author Archives: Amy Kapczynski

About Amy Kapczynski

Amy Kapczynski is professor of law at Yale Law School, faculty co-director of the Global Health Justice Partnership, and co-founder of the Law and Political Economy Blog ( Her research agenda investigates how law structures political economy, with particular attention to issues of inequality and health. Prior to teaching, she served as law clerk to Justices Sandra Day O'Connor and Steven Breyer on the U.S. Supreme Court. She has been involved in access to medicines work since 1999.

Political Economy and Human Rights: Paths Forward

This post is part of a symposium on Amy Kapczynski’s essay “The Right to Medicines in an Age of Neoliberalism.” All contributions to the symposium can be found here. The most elemental claim I make in “The Right to Medicines in an Age of Neoliberalism” is that questions of political economy should be central to the analysis and practice of contemporary human rights. I read this superb set of responses as essentially in agreement, and I will focus here on how they speak to a Continue reading →

The Right to Medicines in an Age of Neoliberalism

Abstract: Has the human rights movement helped entrench neoliberalism? Could it help displace it? This article analyzes “right to medicines” cases, arguing that human rights, even in “socioeconomic” form, can intensify inequality and reproduce neoliberal logics, where they are simply overlain upon the existing political economy. But other versions of human rights are possible too. By tracing the efforts of access to medicines groups to link the right to health to reforms of local and global intellectual property laws, I explore a form of human Continue reading → Continue reading →