Saturday, July 14, 2012

Moyn to Lecture on "Imperialism, Self-Determination and the Rise of Human Rughts

Samuel Moyn, a Professor of History at Columbia University and the author of The Last Utopia: Human Rights in History (Harvard, 2010), delivers the lecture "Imperialism, Self-Determination, and the Rise of Human Rights" at 4:00 on Tuesday, July 17, 2012, in the Library of Congress’s Jefferson Building, Rm. LJ119.  Mark Philip Bradley, Professor of History at the University of Chicago, will comment.  The event is organized by the National History Center of the American Historical Association, hosted by the John W. Kluge Center of the Library of Congress, and funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.  Here is a synopsis.
Decolonization was a human rights victory.  But did its prime movers and ideologues conceive of it in terms of the "human rights" the United Nations declared, and eventually canonized in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948?  Was self-determination a human right in those early years -- and if not, when did it become one?  This lecture investigates and answers these questions, arguing that human rights history is more interesting and accurate when it is viewed alongside decolonization, which had to conclude as a process and falter as an ideal for the contemporary enthusiasm for international human rights to explode.
More information is here.