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New Course for Autumn 2013: Introduction to Human Rights

Intro to Human Rights course symbol.
Professor Ines Valdez Tappata
WeFri 12:45PM – 2:05PM
Room 258, Central Classroom Building
Class #: 31344
Credits: 3

This course provides an introduction to the question of human rights. Throughout the semester, we will examine the conceptual history as well as the practice of human rights through interdisciplinary texts. As part of this assessment, we will consider, (1) the classics texts that contributed to the development of the idea of human rights and its further evolution until the present, (2) the history of human rights’ gradual adoption in international and domestic covenants, (3) the critics that have challenged the principles and the uses of human rights, both historically and in the present, and (4) approaches that seek to make human rights into a political concept. With the purpose of understanding and appreciating the material covered in this course, students are expected to fully participate in the teaching process not only as active learners, but also as peer educators and public scholars.

To achieve the aforementioned objectives, students will be required to both think and write critically, imaginatively and reflectively about the material dealt with in class. Respectful participation, which is not strictly limited to verbal contribution, thus becomes a clear component of the learning process. Daily writing tasks as well as frequent group work will be used to facilitate high levels and varied types of class involvement. Additionally, students will be asked to write a midterm exam and a final essay in which you will further develop and sharpen your analytic as well as your writing skills.

Prerequisites: None