International Human Rights Law – 6886

Fall 2019

This class will provide an introduction to international human rights: law, policy, and process. The class will focus on different aspects of the study of international human rights to provide a representative sampling of the subject through: 1) various procedural postures, 2) diverse institutional settings, 3) a geographical spread of countries, 4) several substantive human rights and humanitarian law norms, and 5) changing approaches to learning. The class will be conducted through lectures, speakers, problems for discussion, small group discussions, role playing exercises, etc. The class will touch on each of the major procedural channels for implementing human rights: on-site observation and fact-finding, state reporting, individual complaints, emergency procedures, state v. state complaints, litigation in domestic courts, legislative hearings, public discourse in international forums, the work of nongovernmental organizations, criminal prosecution, procedures for compensating victims, etc. The problems are set in most of the major international institutions, and include procedures of the UN, the Human Rights Committee, the Inter-American Commission on and Court of Human Rights, the European human rights system, international criminal tribunals, and nongovernmental organizations. The principal focus is on factual contexts in the United States or efforts that can be mounted from this country, but chapters also relate to violations and perspectives in other countries.