Are You With Me? Kevin Boyle biography


An appeal for financial support from Mike Chinoy, former CNN foreign correspondent

Next March, the Lilliput Press in Dublin will publish my new book, Are You With Me? Kevin Boyle and the Rise of the Human Rights Movement. The book is the exciting, moving, and inspiring story of the life and work of  one of the world’s great human rights lawyers – and this is an appeal for help to ensure it reaches the widest possible audience.

During a career that spanned decades, Kevin Boyle dealt with a sweeping range of causes – freedom of the press and expression; state-sanctioned killing and torture; coping with terrorism; the clash between liberal values and the forces of Islamic fundamentalism and extreme nationalism; the rights of women, gays, and minorities. All these issues were central to his broader effort to build a robust international system to protect human rights in challenging times. He was a founder and leader of the civil rights movement in Northern Ireland, and helped forge the intellectual underpinning of the agreement that ended the Troubles. He was the lead lawyer in the case that decriminalized homosexuality in Northern Ireland, and paved the way for its legalisation in the Irish Republic.  With a series of landmark cases at the European Court of Human Rights, he left an enduring mark on international human rights law. He was a key figure in Amnesty International’s campaigns against apartheid in South Africa, and spearheaded the worldwide effort to defend the writer Salman Rushdie after he was threatened with death by Iran’s ayatollahs. He became the chief advisor to the UN High Commissioner on Human Rights and played a pivotal role in efforts to blunt abuses committed in the U.S. 'war on terror.' At the same time, he was the driving force behind the creation of human rights law centres at universities from Ireland and Britain to Brazil and Japan, inspiring generations of students to become leading figures in the world of human rights.

Based on years of research, thousands of documents, and over a hundred interviews,  Are You With Me? Kevin Boyle and the Rise of the Human Rights Movement is the tale of how the son of a taxi driver from Northern Ireland became a globally renowned activist, advocate, and academic: a man whose life story reflected the growth of the human rights movement around the world over the last half-century. His life's work was to battle to defend the voiceless, to influence political leaders, to push the boundaries of human rights law, and to train a new generation of human rights defenders.

Given the financial pressures faced by many publishers, we have organized this crowd-funding effort to help cover not only some of the key expenses of bringing out the book, such as acquiring the rights to photographs and other major production costs, but – especially – to boost the  budget for promotion. This will include holding book events in Ireland, Britain, and other countries, taking out advertisements, sending complimentary copies to influential readers, promoting the book on social media, and creating videos and other promotional material.

ABOUT MIKE CHINOY: Mike Chinoy was a foreign correspondent for CNN for 24 years. During the 1970s and 1980s, he covered the Troubles in Northern Ireland. He has received Emmy, Peabody, and DuPont awards for his journalism. He is also the author of three other works of non-fiction: China Live: People Power and the Television Revolution, Meltdown: The Inside Story of the North Korean Nuclear Crisis, and The Last POW.

ABOUT THE LILLIPUT PRESS: The Lilliput Press is one of Ireland’s smallest yet most respected publishing houses. It specialises in biography, non-fiction, current affairs, and Irish history, but is also one of the country’s leading fiction publishers, representing authors including James Joyce, J. P. Donleavy, and others. A vibrant independent publisher, Lilliput is known for the quality of its books and for discovering and promoting new literary talent.

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Fundraising team: Are You With Me? (3) 

Lilliput Press 
Ruth Hallinan 

Mike Chinoy 
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