The course involves a study of human rights issues drawing on material primarily from Europe and North America, and the Commonwealth. The course considers the meaning of particular human rights and their significance in theory and in practice, and the efficacy of the legal institutions designed to protect them. Several specific substantive issues (minority rights, freedom of speech, privacy, and equality) will be studied in depth to illustrate the complex interplay between theory, legal concepts and procedure, and between legal and non-legal sources of protection. It will draw on international human rights law, but will not be confined to it. The course as a whole will aim to provide the opportunity for in-depth comparative study, during which the appropriateness and utility of comparative legal techniques will be considered. There is no expectation that those taking the course will have taken any other course previously.
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