GI7010 - Human Rights and the International Order (2023/24)
|Module specification||Module approved to run in 2023/24|
|Module title||Human Rights and the International Order|
|Module level||Masters (07)|
|Credit rating for module||20|
|School||School of Social Sciences and Professions|
|Total study hours||194|
|Running in 2023/24(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)||
Human Rights and the International Order analyses the institutionalized practice of human rights, their emancipatory achievements and legitimatory function, their internationalization in the 1940s and 2001’s thwarting of the ambition of a “responsibility to protect”, the present plight of both them and the order along with which they were internationalized, and their prospects.
The module aims to enable its participants to critically analyze:
1. the causes of, and reasons for, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and the broader development of human rights as a globalizing and institutionalizing force in relations between states;
2. the variety of particular states, domestic and foreign policies, non-state actors, cultures, and motivating ideologies with which human rights has come into conflict, and to explain such conflict;
3. the role of human rights in justifying wars, in legitimating international organizations, and in maintaining international order.
Prior learning requirements
No pre- or co- requisites for the module.
Not available for Study Abroad.
The module begins with what international relations orthodoxy knows as “the first debate”, which occurred within the pages of E.H. Carr’s Twenty Years’ Crisis, setting the ideals of liberal internationalism in tension with the conflicting interests of rival states, as collective actors. Its focus is upon how transformation of the United Nations’ alliance into United Nations Organization was legitimated in terms of the rights not of states, as at Versailles, but of individuals against states, and of how this legitimation worked not only against fascist states but also, eventually, against communist ones. (A curiosity of this is how Carr, who was sceptical about both the UNO and its conception of human rights, nonetheless chaired a symposium tasked by UNESCO with formulating that conception.) Such successes have not proven repeatable in the twenty-first century. The module is concerned to discover why. (LO 1-4)
Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity
Students are required to conduct research for a seminar presentation and to participate in critical discussion of both lectures and presentations. Class discussion mediates between liberal ideals of moral universalism and the demands of real political particularity, to facilitate critical reflection on how each conditions the other. Tutorial advice is provided in support of students’ preparation for both their formative presentation and summative essay.
On successful completion of this module, students will be able to:
1. analyze the causes of, and explain the reasons for, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and the broader development of human rights as a globalizing and institutionalizing force in relations between states;
2. describe he variety of particular states, domestic and foreign policies, non-state actors, cultures, and motivating ideologies with which human rights has come into conflict, and to explain such conflict;
3. evaluate the roles of human rights in justifying wars, in legitimating international organizations and the international order they structure, and in warranting the liberation of some previously oppressed groups;
4. compose, present, debate and defend an argument about the international role of human rights.
Assessment is by both formative and summative instruments, working from a single list of questions. Students have the right to answer one question in their presentation and another in their essay but are advised of the prudence of using the presentation to test out their answer and use of supporting sources and, thereafter, to reflect upon their defence of their answer in class discussion, and to go on to revise their argument and elaborating it into a fully formed essay.