This course name and description ONLY applies to academic year 2021-2022

POLS 13181-6: Theory, Practice, Debates

Instructor: Christina Bambrick

The language of rights pervades American discourse. This may be a virtue if rights consciousness results in a more just society. On the other hand, it may be counterproductive if “rights talk” inhibits dialogue with others or distracts us from considering our duties as well. This class surveys crucial texts and cases that have contributed to the development of the concept of rights, with the ultimate aim of thinking critically about this fixture of modern politics. Informed by these theoretical and historical foundations we take on big questions, and perhaps even come to some answers, concerning the limits, efficacy, and future of rights.