The shareholder empowerment debate in corporate law is premised upon a reoccurring assumption that, historically, there has been an erosion of shareholder rights. This article contends that this premise is inaccurate and that shareholder rights have remained fundamentally constant. It goes on to argue that a more promising approach to the existing understanding of rights in the shareholder empowerment debate may be found in the broader legal rights literature. In analysing shareholder rights through this lens it is contended that, while there has not been an appreciable abrogation of shareholder rights, it is in the nature of legal rights per se to contain power whilst simultaneously reinforcing the institutions and structures from where those rights emanate.
Attenborough, D. (2013). The Vacuous Concept of Shareholder Voting Rights. European Business Organization Law Review, 14(2), 147-173. https://doi.org/10.1017/s1566752912001115