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Rome, Italy

Special Topics: Human Rights Here and Now

Global Temple Conference

Course Number: 
Political Science
Semester(s) Offered: 
Fall 2018
Spring 2019
Spring 2018
Credit Hours: 

The Human Rights Now course explores contemporary human rights issues with a specific focus on Europe and the Mediterranean basin. A necessary background study will analyze the foundation of human rights principles, the rationale behind the need to codify a human rights law, as well as the international legal instruments and bodies mandated to ensure its enforcement. After having established the basis of human rights’ history, philosophy and legal status, the course will ensure the issues related to human rights do not remain a theoretical, merely academic nor abstract issue, but will stimulate students at an interactive and participatory level by engaging them through in-class debates, discussions with professionals working in the field, and visits to local institutions. Students will have the opportunity to investigate at depth a particular human right violation of concern. By the end of the course students will be expected to have acquired the ability to answer most of the following questions with a critical viewpoint, and raise other questions autonomously: What human rights are relevant in Europe today? What is their ethical ratio, why do they deserve international protection, how is their enforcement effective and when is neutrality a mistake? How is the human rights core challenged by modern global crises? Are human rights universal or are they culturally bound? How can conflicts between rights be solved and where does national sovereignty draw the line? And, last but not least, what can individuals do, at the micro and macro level, to foster a future respectful of human rights? 

Course Theme & Academic Area: