International and Comparative Social Rights examines the contribution of law to making poverty history. The course critically examines the role of international and comparative law in constructing and maintaining historic and current social, political and economic inequalities. The course will analyse the law’s potential and limitations as an instrument of redistributive and egalitarian social, economic, cultural and political change, and political philosophies focusing on the separation of powers, justiciability and institutional conversations.
The history of the different systems of implementation will be studied together with new developments both procedural and substantive within the United Nations human rights machinery. The implementation of positive obligations on governments within the African Union, the Organisation of American States as well as within Europe are also analysed.
International and Comparative Social Rights will also include comparative jurisprudence from Argentina, India, Philippines, South Africa and Venezuela as well as other relevant jurisdictions and will explore the potential of these different approaches for other democracies.
3,000 word essay, readings and in-class project