Human Rights and the Refugee Crisis

Course Code: 
GSSJ 3559
Laura Alexander

Motivating Questions: Do human beings have human rights simply by virtue of being human, or are rights not truly “rights” if they aren’t protected and upheld by some institution capable of enforcing them – most commonly the nation-state? What sorts of thought, reflection, and action most fruitfully move us toward a world in which the protection of human rights is guaranteed for all – or is there a goal other than human rights protection that better promotes the good of all people? As students and moral actors, how do we think about these issues; how do we reflect on our own values and our contribution to the global common good; how do we act in ways that promote the good and reflect our values; and how do we prepare for a lifetime of asking these questions and addressing them in thought and action?

This course will incorporate discussion of texts and analytic and reflective writing alongside a planned service-learning project, guest speakers from the community, and career and vocational reflection.