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Law School Author Series: Seminar 19 with Kathryn Sikkink

Law School Author Series - Conversations with Donna Lyons. Seminar 19 with Professor Kathryn Sikkink.

Kathryn Sikkink, Ryan Family Professor of Human Rights Policy at Harvard Kennedy School, will speak about her book, ‘The Hidden Face of Rights: Towards a Politics of Responsibilities’ (Yale University Press 2020) on 18 February 2021.

Date and time: 7-8pm (Dublin) / 2-3pm (EST), Thursday, 18 February 2021

Attendees can join the webinar directly via Zoom and the event will be simultaneously live-streamed on the Law School Facebook page. This event is free of charge and open to all and there will be an opportunity for Q&A. The webinar can accommodate 100 attendees and participants will be admitted on a first come, first served basis. If the webinar fills to capacity, it will be possible to watch the Facebook Live Stream, and a recording will also be made available following the event. We look forward to seeing you there.

Kathryn Sikkink is the Ryan Family Professor of Human Rights Policy at Harvard Kennedy School. Sikkink works on international norms and institutions, transnational advocacy networks, the impact of human rights law and policies, and transitional justice. Her publications include The Hidden Face of Rights: Toward a Politics of Responsibilies; Evidence for Hope: Making Human Rights Work in the 21st Century; The Justice Cascade: How Human Rights Prosecutions are Changing World Politics (awarded the Robert F. Kennedy Center Book Award, and the WOLA/Duke University Award); Mixed Signals: U.S. Human Rights Policy and Latin America; Activists Beyond Borders: Advocacy Networks in International Politics (co-authored with Margaret Keck and awarded the Grawemeyer Award for Ideas for Improving World Order, and the ISA Chadwick Alger Award for Best Book in the area of International Organizations); and The Persistent Power of Human Rights: From Commitment to Compliance, (co-edited with Thomas Risse and Stephen Ropp). She holds an MA and Ph.D. from Columbia University. Sikkink has been a Fulbright Scholar in Argentina and a Guggenheim fellow. She is a member of the American Philosophical Society, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the Council on Foreign Relations, and a member of the editorial board of International Organization and the American Political Science Review.

About ‘The Hidden Face of Rights: Towards a Politics of Responsibilities’:

When we debate questions in international law, politics, and justice, we often use the language of rights―and far less often the language of responsibilities. Human rights scholars and activists talk about state responsibility for rights, but they do not articulate clear norms about other actors’ obligations. In this book, Kathryn Sikkink argues that we cannot truly implement human rights unless we also recognize and practice the corresponding human responsibilities.

Focusing on five areas―climate change, voting, digital privacy, freedom of speech, and sexual assault―and providing many examples of on the ground initiatives where people choose to embrace a close relationship between rights and responsibilities, Sikkink argues for the importance of responsibilities to any comprehensive understanding of political ethics and human rights.