Part One: The Preamble to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states that the rights enumerated apply to “all peoples and all nations, to the end that every individual and every organ of society…shall…promote respect for these rights and freedoms by progressive measures, national and international…” Looking not just at the individual Articles but the UDHR as a whole—including the Preamblecharacterize the normative foundation of human rights and the understanding of responsibility for securing and protecting them. This discussion should include at least the following: 1. What human characteristics are privileged in the 30 Articles? How, in other words, does it understand the essential characteristics of human beings. 2. Which group of rights are positive rights? Which groups are negative rights? What does this positive/negative grouping of rights tell you about both what humans are like and how states behave? 3. What does it mean to say that the rights of the UDHR are “universal, indivisible, and interdependent and interrelated”? For example? 4. What does the preamble mean when it says that “every organ” of society is responsible for the promotion and protection of rights? Please provide at least three examples.
Parts Two and Three: Choose ONE of the following topics: Prisoners’ Rights or Censorship. Read the materials supplied for each topic. In these two Parts, you are required to write individual pro and con arguments for/against the rights of prisoners or state censorship. One essay (Part Two) will be a pro argument and the second essay (Part Three) should be a con argument. While your pro and con should be presented in separate essays, they should be written with an eye to each other; each should be, at a minimum, addressing the points of the other. A good argument will go farther. You will not do well if you write one side as a ‘straw man.’ Whatever your personal argument, the other side should be presented as the best argument against you. Please use examples from the sources that are provided. Essays that are purely general will not earn good grades; deal with the facts of each case. Good arguments will be detailed and well structured.
Part Four: Write a conclusion that explains not only which side you have chosen to defend, but why? How does your argument address the claims of the Universal Declaration? You must take a side. To be very clear…you will NOT be graded on the position you take but how well you structure and defend the arguments in each section of the assignment. Prisoners’ Rights: Please see the NYT links to three stories. I have also posted these in case you have paywall issues with the Times. At dispute is not whether the individuals in prison are innocent or guilty. At dispute is whether human rights disappear at the door of a cell. https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/24/obituaries/mart… https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/29/us/alabama-pris… https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/27/us/politics/gua… Censorship: The most typical targets of censorship are in music and the arts. Popular culture is the most vulnerable, which is an interesting problem in itself. Below are links to music, photographs, and a painting that have faced censorship in at least one country. Each is also an example of censored work that critics have argued is, in fact, art. Begin by asking yourself the question “why were these banned?” and, then, make your argument about censorship. You are NOT being asked to defend or critique the individual examples, but to see what is common among them, what makes them a target for censors, and whether they were properly censored.