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HRTS G4320 Human Rights and Foreign Policy. 3 points.


Human rights play a distinctive role as "the political utopia" in contemporary international life. Still, human rights violations remain widespread and human rights norms are still the focus of numerous controversies, from their definition to their protection and promotion by various international actors with different moral and strategic agendas. This course will examine the place of human rights in the foreign policies of the US and a number of other countries around the globe. The course explores the social construction of human rights and national interests as well as the context, instruments, and tradeoffs in the formulation and implementation human rights foreign policies. Some of the questions this class will consider include: What are human rights and how is their protection best assessed? How have different states promoted and contributed to the violation of human rights abroad? How does human rights promotion strengthen and undermine other foreign policy goals? What's the role of non-state actors in the promotion and violation of human rights across the globe? When has the impact of the human rights norms and regimes been the greatest and when have the efforts of state and non-state actors to promote human rights at home and abroad made the most difference?