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3540. Topics in Human Rights Practice

3.00 credits | May be repeated for a total of 9 credits.

Prerequisites: Instructor consent.

Grading Basis: Graded

Seminar on topics in theoretical and practice-based knowledge and skills related to human rights. Topics vary by semester.

Last Refreshed: 28-NOV-23 AM
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Term Campus Instruction Mode Instructor Section Session Schedule Location Enrollment Notes
Fall 2023 Storrs Online Synchronous Sirmed, Marvi 001 Reg MoWe 4:40pm‑5:55pm
No Room Required - Online 24/25 This course focuses on the role of digital media and journalism to realize a range of human rights concerns. In pursuit of understanding the intrinsic link between journalism and human rights; as well as the enhanced role of media (new and traditional) in human rights practice, we examine we examine the media landscape and ecosystem, how it impacts human rights reporting, the limitations of human rights practitioners including journalists, and how to plan human rights advocacy by effectively engaging media. This course draws upon numerous examples of how reporting on human rights issues has become more ubiquitous and, in some ways, more challenging given the rise of the internet and social media. We include case examples from different regions and countries, with special attention devoted to South Asia and the United States given the background and expertise of the course instructors. The course will provide an opportunity for students to consider how to share insights into human rights issues and develop advocacy campaigns using different social media: Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, email, television and radio. Topics include citizen and community journalism, social networks and independent media, as well as social media strategies of underground and international advocacy organizations in human rights campaigning. This course is open to all majors and students of all experience levels, from first-years to seniors!
Spring 2024 Storrs In Person 001 Reg TuTh 12:30pm‑1:45pm
KNS 201 6/20 Course Notes: In the media-saturated environment we live in, our perceptions about various issues, including those concerning human rights are shaped and negotiated through diverse media forms. This course aims to equip students with a critical lens to understand the institution of media, human rights discourse and representational practices around it. The specific focus of the course is to discuss issues related to the intersectional making of gender, race and coloniality as human rights debates and the way in which media create, respond and circulate them in order to retain or subvert existing perceptions. Media, situated at the intersections of being a service and industry, often generate debates that align with interests of the dominant and powerful sections. However, in popular culture, we also encounter examples of subverting the same power structures based on gender, sexuality, race or other forms of coloniality. As human rights framework increasingly engages with debates beyond state paradigms, the course intends to deliberate on these debates in diverse contexts, not just in relation to colonial empires, but also as continuing systems of dominance. In addition to understanding media as the site of these debates, the course would also discuss examples of media repression by the state and overpowering capitalist markets in a global context. Three major themes/readings of the course would include critically understanding media (as an institution and as a site of repression), human rights with reference to gender, race and coloniality; and representational practices. In addition to lectures based on the readings, film screenings, podcasts and discussion would be part of the course.