Human Rights Reading Group

2015 Human Rights Reading Group topics

September 9 - Ava DuVernay’s film, Selma (2014).

August 12 - Chapter Two of David Engel and Frank Munger’s book, Rights of Inclusion: Law and Identity in the Life Stories of American with Disabilities (University of Chicago Press, 2003).

July 15 - Jacob Katz Cogan’s “The Regulatory Turn in International Law” (2011) 52 Harvard International Law Journal 321.

June 10 - Frederic Megret’s “The Disabilities Convention: Human Rights of Persons with Disabilities or Disability Rights” Human Rights Quarterly 30 (2008): 494-516.

May 13 - Martha-Marie Kleinhans and Roderick A Macdonald’s, “What is a critical legal pluralism?” (1997) 12 Canadian Journal of Law and Society 25, pp. 25-46.

April 15 - Sarah Nouwen’s and Wouter Werner’s “Monopolizing Global Justice: International Criminal Law as Challenge to Human Diversity” (2015, Journal of International Criminal Justice, Vol 13, pp 157-176)

March 11 - Steven Greer’s article, ‘Is the Prohibition against Torture, Cruel, Inhuman and Degrading Treatment Really ‘Absolute’ in International Human Rights Law?’ in Human Rights Law Review (no citation details; advance access - online pdf only available on March 11 - doi: 10.1093/hrlr/ngu035)

2014 Human Rights Reading Group topics

November 27 - Yves Dezalay’s and Bryant Garth’s “From the Cold War to Kosovo: The rise and renewal of the field of international human rights”, Annual Review of Law and Social Science 2 (2006): 231-55.

October 30 - James W. Nickel’s “Are Human Rights Utopian?”, Philosophy and Public Affairs 11.3 (1982): 246-264.

September 25 - Chapter 1 (‘Bodily Integrity and Its Exclusions’) of Elizabeth Anker’s book Fictions of Dignity: Embodying Human Rights in World Literature (2012).

August 28 - Thet Sambath and Rob Lemkin’s 2009 documentary Enemies of the People

July 31 - Jayson Lamchek’s ‘Exercising Rights Into Existence’, Australian Journal of Human Rights, 19(1) 2013, 175-196

June 24 - Khaled Hosseini’s 2003 novel The Kite Runner

May 29 - Seyla Benhabib’s ‘On the Alleged Conflict Between Democracy and International Law’, Ethics and International Affairs, 19(1) 2005, 85-100;

May 1 - Lisa Hajjar’s “Chaos as Utopia: International Criminal Prosecutions as a Challenge to State Power.” Studies in Law, Politics and Society 31 (2003): 3 – 23.

March 27 - Hannah Arendt’s “The Rights of Man” – What Are They?’ Modern Review, 3(1) 1949, 24-37.

February 27 - Michael Ondaatje’s 2000 novel Anil’s Ghost

2013 Human Rights Reading Group topics

November 29 – Torture in the War Against Terror: Zero Dark Thirty (2012).

October 31 – Human Rights History: Samuel Moyn’s 2010 book The Last Utopia: Human Rights in History.

September 26 – Causation and context: Susan Marks’s article “Human Rights and Root Causes,” published in Modern Law Review 74.1 (2011): 57-78.

August 29 – Human rights and state sovereignty: Michael Ignatieff’s “The Return of Sovereignty” (2012), from the New Republic, in dialogue with Geoffrey Harpham’s 2013 Humanity Blog article.

August 1 – The politics of recognition and the politics of redistribution (II): Iris Marion Young’s 1997 essay “Unruly Categories: A Critique of Nancy Fraser’s Dual Systems Theory” from New Left Review I/222. This continued our engagement with Fraser’s ideas in Justice Interruptus, as well as in her response to Young.

June 27 – Race and racial vilification in Australian Rules Football: Media discussions about the racial villification of Sydney Swans player Adam Goodes along with Chris Hallinan and Barry Judd’s article 2009 “Race Relations, Indigenous Australia and the Social Impact of Professional Australian Football” in Sport in Society 12.9 (2009).

May 30 – The politics of recognition and the politics of redistribution (I): “From Redistribution to Recognition? Dilemmas of Justice in a ‘Postsocialist’ Age” from Nancy Fraser’s 1997 book Justice Interruptus.

May 2 – Citizenship and new technologies of torture: Darius Rejali’s “Modern Torture as a Civic Marker: Solving a Global Anxiety with a new Political Technology” from the Journal of Human Rights 2.2 (2003): 153-171.

March 28 – Aboriginal Australia, the Intervention, and the politics of mobility: The documentary Our Generation (2010), and “Being Moved (On)” by Lea, Young, Markham, Holmes, and Doran, from Radical History Review 114 (2012).

February 28 – The social individual of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights: Daniel Defoe’s novel Robinson Crusoe (1719), read in conjunction with excerpts from Joseph Slaughter’s 2007 Human Rights, Inc.

2012 Human Rights Reading Group topics

November 21– The right of doing human rights wrongs?: Albert Camus’s play The Just Assassins (1949) and Michael Walzer’s “Political Action: The Problem of Dirty Hands,” Philosophy and Public Affairs 2.2 (1973): 160-80.

October 24 – Creating new ways of seeing rights: Frederic Megret’s “The Disabilities Convention: Human Rights of Persons with Disabilities or Disability Rights” Human Rights Quarterly 30 (2008): 494-516.

September 12 – The regulatory frame of human rights: Sundhya Pahuja’s “Rights as Regulation: The Integration of Development and Human Rights,” from Bronwen Morgan (ed)’s The Intersection of Rights and Regulation (2007).

August 15 – Representing atrocity: Waltz with Bashir (2008) and Rosanne Kennedy’s “Constituting Witnessing Publics: Representing the Gaza Conflict in an Era of Human Rights and Testimony” (in progress).

July 11 – Theorising statelessness, asylum, and the holder of rights: Giorgio Agamben’s “Beyond Human Rights,” from his Means Without Ends: Notes on Politics (2000), and Jacques Rancière’s “Who Is the Subject of the Rights of Man?” South Atlantic Quarterly 103.2/3 (2004): 297-310.

June 13 – Intellectual models of human rights: Marie-Bénédicte Dembour’s “What are Human Rights? Four Schools of Thought” from Human Rights Quarterly 32.1 (2010): 1-20.

April 11 – Victimising languages: Ratna Kapur’s “The Tragedy of Victimisation Rhetoric: Resurrecting the ‘Native’ Subject in International/Post-Colonial Feminist Legal Politics,” Harvard Human Rights Journal 15 (2002): 1-37

March 28 – The (a)politics of human rights: Wendy Brown’s “ ‘The most we can hope for…’: Human rights and the politics of fatalism”, South Atlantic Quarterly 103.2/3 (2004): 451-463.

February 29 – The institutionalisation of human rights: David Kennedy’s “The International Human Rights Movement: Part of the Problem?”, from Harvard Human Rights Journal 15 (2002): 101-25.

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