The politics of emergency and the demise of the developing state: problems for humanitarian advocacy

This article discusses humanitarian advocacy in the contemporary world within the wider crisis of political vision. Humanitarian advocacy over the last 15 years has drawn attention to how crises have been precipitated by state policies and has sought international intervention to protect people. It has consequently become associated with challenging the national sovereignty of the developing state. This article contends that the weak state is the problem, and suggests that the existing paradigm of humanitarian advocacy helps to legitimise the erosion of equality among sovereign states and the reassertion of international inequalities.