Humanities in Human Rights Workshop 2015

A one day workshop at the University of East Anglia to bring together scholars and postgraduate students to explore the role of the humanities in Human Rights. The workshop will draw on the previous series of CHASE supported workshops of the same title, and intends to  extend network activities in this area with a view to further developing an active network of scholars working in the field and in anticipation of future collaborative research bids and activity.

The workshop is timely; from the Magna Carta to helping to write the U.N. Declaration of Human Rights in 1948, the U.K. has made a significant contribution to the ways in which human rights have been imagined, created, and advocated for internationally. Given that 2015 marks a full decade of democracy in decline around the globe, and that this decline is characterised by a growing disdain for the democratic standards of civil liberties, political freedom, and human rights, there is an urgency to bring researchers in this area together for discussion, debate, and exploration. Human rights are not naturally occurring, of course, and, amongst other factors, are the result of political and legal action and will, fuelled always by the imagination.

At the core of this workshop is the imagination in relation to human experience and how rights have been imagined historically through writing, whether literary, political, or social, and what we can learn from these in the present day when rights are once again under threat and UK politicians are discussing repealing the Human Rights Act (1998). This workshop will create a space for leading and emerging scholars in the field to discuss their research and its implications for our daily lives. We will explore where our ideas of rights come from and how they have been borne out in the political and legal sphere.

Further details will be posted on this website as they become available.

Current CHASE students interested in this event should contact: Dr Wendy McMahon (

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