Professor’s book examines history of human rights

Average people have helped to shape the human rights movement, Jean Quataert says in a new book about the development and impact of rights after World War II.
Advocating Dignity: Human Rights Mobilizations in Global Politics, the latest book by the history professor, was released by the University of Pennsylvania Press.
“One of the book’s major contributions is that it is a global study of the human rights machinery done essentially from the grass roots and through people’s movements,” Quataert said. “I wanted to show what a difference average people make in global politics.”
The book takes the reader from the mid-20th century into the early 21st century, from the emergence of the human rights system in 1945 to the replacement of the United Nations’ Human Rights Commission with a Human Rights Council in 2005. In between, Quataert embarks on an ambitious and thematic journey in which she establishes global contexts for the work of human rights advocates.
Case studies range from the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa to the dissidents of the Soviet Union to advocacy for gender, citizenship and socio-economic rights.
Article by Eric Coker
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