Graduate Certificate in Human Rights
Since the end of the Cold War, human rights have risen to prominence in both national constitutional politics and international law and governance, as well as had a significant impact upon wider areas such as health, education, the environment and economic development. Few legal/political concepts presently have such a global reach, and few concepts compel political actors to confront the tension between respecting social and cultural diversity while simultaneously identifying universal aspects of the human condition deserving of legal and other protections.
The Graduate Certificate in Human Rights draws upon the academic strengths of the University of Connecticut's School of Law and College of Liberal Arts and Sciences to introduce students to the key modern debates in this interdisciplinary field of study. The program provides a historical, literary and philosophical perspective for thinking broadly about modern human rights; an understanding of social science research on rights, conflict and governance; as well as expertise in the international conventions, treaties and case law from international courts (such as the European Court of Human Rights, the International Criminal Tribunals for Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia). The courses encourage students to think critically about the strengths and limitations of the human rights framework and how they might develop an active and original research agenda in this growing field of interdisciplinary inquiry.
See below for complete list of our courses and certification requirements.
Fall 2013 Human Rights Course Offerings
The following is a list of the CLAS and Law School human rights classes that will be offered in Fall 2013.
HRTS 5301: Contemporary Debates in Human Rights
*Core Course for the Human Rights Certificiate*
W 10:10 - 1:10 pm
This is the core course for the Graduate Certificate in Human Rights and it introduces students to the central human rights debates of the day. These change over time and so does the content of the course. We start with discussions that are centuries old, beginning with the Kantian view that humans hold universal natural rights by virtue of their ability to reason. We consider Hobbesian foundations for rights based in social contract theory and ideas of security. We then move on to the Marxist critique of human rights and then consider the culturalist critiques of rights of the late twentieth century. Collective rights have re-emerged in the late twentieth century and we evaluate their impact and their future potential. The course also addresses concrete questions of women's rights, children's rights and the right to health. Ultimately its aim is to enhance your capacity to state clearly which political-philosophical formulations of rights you chose to defend, and which you will not defend.
CLCS 5317: Classical Rhetoric and the Institution of Slavery
*Interested students should email Professor Winter for a permission number*
Th 1:00 - 3:30 pm
This course charts connections among the histories of rhetoric, political theory, and human rights by focusing on the institution of slavery. Rhetoric is linked to slavery in Plato's Gorgias: the sophist tells Socrates that the rhetor has the power to make other men his slaves by persuading the multitude. But rhetoric also becomes a tool for the enslaved to use against the powerful in classical tragedy and historiography, and in late eighteenth- and nineteenth-century British and American abolitionism, arguably one of the first modern political movements explicitly to uphold human rights. This course will function as an introduction to classical rhetoric. We will also read important works of political philosophy dealing with slavery and human rights, and will end with a set of case studies on American and British abolitionist rhetoric, with particular attention to the writings of Frederick Douglass. Readings include works by: Euripides, Thucydides, Plato, Aristotle, Cicero, Longinus, Hegel, Equiano, Douglass, Agamben, Rancière; additional speeches and secondary critical readings.
HIST 5622:Historical Literature of Latin America: Human Rights in Contemporary Latin America
W 2:30 - 5:30 pm
This seminar focuses on issues related to claims of human rights and social movements in Latin America in the last three decades of the 20th century. It begins by questioning the concept of Latin America as it relates to the construction of rights in the context of processes of nation formation. The seminar explores topics related to citizenship, war, terrorism and human rights, gender, socio-economic rights and indigenous claims. It aims at examining the theory and methodology of the history of human rights in Latin America, including the intersection of memory and testimonios (as a genre in Latin America's literature) in historical analysis. In sum, part of the seminar is a reading/historiographic exercise and part a research practice. We will be exploring the state of the literature but we will also be 'producing knowledge' as historians.
ENGL 6750-001: The Novel and War
TH 9:30 - 12:00 pm
This is a course on genre that situates the novel within the broad historical, political, ethical, and legal discourse of war and conflict. The course has historical (from 19th century to the present) and comparative trajectories (Europe, US and Third World). We will seek to answer questions such as is there a world genre of the war novel and what are its generic features? Can we discern a development or evolution of the genre? How do political and philosophical questions about war enter the novel? What role does gender play in the genre and how does it affect the determination of what counts as war and war experience? Do different conflicts produce different types of writing (for example conventional war vs insurgencies, anticolonial wars, guerrilla warfare, civil war etc)? Students will be expected to do one or two oral presentations, a book review, and a research paper.
LAW 7609: Asylum & Human Rights Clinic
Bauer & Marton
Tu 2:00 - 5:00 pm
Students in this clinical program represent persons seeking political asylum in the United States. Asylum is available to individuals who can establish a well-founded fear of persecution if returned to their home countries. Students exercise primary responsibility for all aspects of the asylum process, including proceedings in the Asylum Office of the Department of Homeland Security and hearings before Immigration judges. Students interview and counsel clients and investigate the facts supporting their claims, research human rights conditions in the client's home country, prepare supporting documentation and a brief in support of the asylum application, and represent clients at hearings and in related matters. Classroom seminars focus on the substantive and procedural law, both international and domestic, relevant to asylum claims, the lawyering skills that students will utilize in their cases, and the discussion of legal, tactical and ethical issues that arise in the context of the casework. This is a one semester clinic, but students have the opportunity to continue their work in subsequent semesters through Advanced Clinic Fieldwork.
LAW 7672: Immigration Law
M 6:30 - 9:15 pm
This course will provide a basic understanding of the issues and principles upon which U.S. immigration law is based as well as the policies underlying those principles. It will examine the legal and social aspects of this administrative agency-based field including visas, detention, exclusion, deportation, relief from deportation, judicial review, and citizenship by birth and naturalization. It will also expose students to the interplay of complex statutes and regulations, policy and ethics issues, international law, human rights law and constitutional law. It is about outsiders and therefore is a key part of the study of civil rights.
LAW 7679: International Law
Tu Th 10:30 am - 12:00 pm
This course is a study of the rules and adjudication of international law. Topics include customary international law, treaties, general principles of law and equity, the adjudication of international law by international courts, domestic courts, and international arbitration.
LAW 7831: Comparative Constitutional Law
Tu 2:00 - 5:00 pm
A consideration of selected features of constitutional systems in various national and international legal systems. Topics examined will include the role of the Constitution in the legal system, the sources of constituent authority, the structures and institutions developed for making the Constitution effective including different models of constitutional judicial review, the division of authorities among governmental institutions and the definition and scope of constitutionally entrenched rights of individuals. Students will be required to undertake substantial research into some aspect of the constitutional law of a foreign legal system and to present that research to the seminar.
LAW 7838: Advanced Constitutional Law: Individual Rights
W 9:30 am - 12:30 pm
This course exposes students to a broad array of materials and issues that bear directly on the nature and scope of individual liberty. The course begins by examining the conflicting demands of justice and neutrality as guiding principles for constitutional interpretation within the Fundamental Rights Debate. Through the study of case law relating to privacy, substantive due process, and equal protection, the courses examines the outer limits of the law, the history and development of legal theory, and its potential application to cutting edge issues. Issues of consent, bodily integrity, choice regarding intimate associations, gender, sexuality, racial classifications and privacy in the age of digital technology are viewed in light of past and future trends. Prerequisite: Constitutional Law, An Introduction (540).
Graduate Certificate Director
Contact Professor Shareen Hertel, Director of the Graduate Certificate in Human Rights, at (860) 486-4129 or by e-mail at email@example.com
For Law School students and applicants please contact Professor Richard A. Wilson, Director, Human Rights Institute by email firstname.lastname@example.org
The Graduate Certificate in Human Rights is designed for graduate students in good academic standing enrolled at the Law School or in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences MA and PhD programs. Students must apply to the Certificate program and provide relevant documentation requested therein. CLAS students are strongly encouraged to apply no later than March 1 of the year in which they intend to graduate.
Law School Pre-Requisites and Eligibility
Law School students are strongly encouraged to apply no later than March 1 of their 3L year. Law School students are required to take the Law School course ‘Constitutional Law’ as a pre/co-requisite when embarking upon the Graduate Certificate in Human Rights.
Graduate Certificate Course Requirements
The Graduate Certificate in Human Rights requires a minimum total of twelve credits, consisting of one core course and three electives, as detailed below. It is recommended that students take core courses first before moving on to elective courses. Core courses cover the main historical, philosophical and legal questions in human rights. Elective courses allow students to branch out into the various subfields of human rights such as indigenous and cultural rights, economic rights, human rights in Latin America and Europe, and so on. Certificate courses do not require pre-requisites, except for ‘Advanced Constitutional Law’ as indicated.
College of Liberal Arts and Sciences-Storrs Campus
- HRTS 5301: Contemporary Debates in Human Rights
UConn Law School-Hartford
- LAW 7878: International Human Rights
(Approved courses for certificate)
- ANTH 5305: Health and Human Rights
- ANTH 5315: Gender and Culture
- ANTH 5377/PH 5497: Anthropology and International Health
- ANTH 5390: Cultural Rights
- ANTH 5391: Human Rights in a Diverse World
Comparative Literary and Cultural Studies
- CLCS 5317: Classical Rhetoric & the Institution of Slavery
- ECON 5218 / HRTS 5390 / POLS 5390: Economic Rights
- ENGL 6540: Seminar in Literature and Human Rights
- GERM 6480 / CLCS 5318: Literature and Human Rights
- HIST 5195: The Origins and Evolution of the Genocide Debate
- HIST 5622: Historical Literature of Latin America: Human Rights in the late Twentieth Century
- HRTS 5390 / ECON 5218 / POLS 5390: Economic Rights
- HRTS 5899: Seminar in Variable Topics in Human Rights
- PHIL 5315: Seminar in Moral Philosophy
- POLS 5301: Political Theory: Theories of Rights
- POLS 5315: Human Security
- POLS 5390 / HRTS 5390 / ECON 5318: Economic Rights
- SPAN 6402: Literary and Cultural Theory and the Hispanic Tradition: War and Modernity in Latin American Literature and Culture
UConn Law School
- LAW 7609: Asylum & Human Rights Clinic [open only to Law School students. only 3 credit classroom component counts towards Certificate]
- LAW 7653: European Human Rights
- LAW 7672: Immigration Law
- LAW 7679: International Law
- LAW 7722: International Law and Human Rights Clinic [only three credit classroom component counts towards Certificate]
- LAW 7759: The Nuremburg Trials
- LAW 7814: Refugee Law
- LAW 7831: Comparative Constitutional Law
- LAW 7838: Advanced Constitutional Law: Individual Rights [pre-requisite Constitutional Law]
- LAW 7872: Latin American Law
- LAW 7879: International Humanitarian Law
- LAW 7883: Human Rights and Post Conflict Justice
[Note: The most suitable courses at the Law School for students from CLAS at Storrs are LAW 7653, LAW 7679, LAW 7872, LAW 7759, and LAW 7883.]
- Barnes, Robin – Professor of Law, Law School
- Bauer, Jon, Clinical Professor of Law, Law School
- Birmingham, Robert – Professor of Law, Law School
- Bloomfield, Paul, Associate Professor, Philosophy
- Bystrom, Kerry, Assistant Professor, English
- Coundouriotis, Eleni, Associate Professor, English
- Dudden, Alexis, Professor, History
- Dussart, Francoise, Professor, Anthropology
- Erickson, Pamela, Professor, Anthropology
- Finger, Anke – Associate Professor, LCL, German
- Gilligan, Emma, Associate Professor, Joint Faculty History-Human Rights Institute, Co-Director, Human Rights Institute
- Hertel, Shareen, Associate Professor, Joint Faculty Political Science-Human Rights Institute, Director of the Graduate Certificate in Human Rights
- Hiskes, Richard, Professor, Political Science
- Holzer, Elizabeth, Assistant Professor, Joint Faculty Sociology – Human Rights Institute
- Irizarry, Guillermo – Associate Professor, LCL, Spanish
- Janis, Mark, William F. Starr Professor of Law, Law School
- Kay, Richard, Wallace Stevens Professor of Law, Law School
- Krisch, Henry, Professor Emeritus, Political Science
- Kupperman, Joel, Professor Emeritus, Philosophy
- Linnekin, Jocelyn – Professor, Anthropology
- Martinez, Samuel – Associate Professor, Anthropology
- Minkler, Alanson, Associate Professor, Economics
- Mitoma, Glenn – Assistant Professor in Residence, Human Rights
- Naples, Nancy, Professor, Sociology and Women’s Studies
- Oquendo, Angel, Professor, Law School
- Overmyer-Velasquez, Mark, Associate Professor, History
- Prakash, Nishith – Assistant Professor, Economics
- Randolph, Susan – Associate Professor, Economics
- Redman, Renee – Adjunct Faculty, Law School
- Richards, David, Associate Professor, Joint Faculty Political Science – Human Rights Institute
- Silvestrini, Blanca, Professor, History
- Van Isschot, Luis – Assistant Professor, Joint Faculty History-Human Rights
- Willen, Sarah, Assistant Professor, Anthropology
- Wilson, Richard A., Gladstein Chair of Human Rights, Professor of Anthropology, Co-Director, Human Rights Institute
- Wogenstein, Sebastian, Associate Professor, LCL, German