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"Dwarfs, Rabbits, Nelson Mandela & the Ninth Circuit: Understanding Human Dignity" Christopher McCrudden, Queen's University Belfast

Start/End Monday, March 24, 2014 12:10 PM EDT -- 01:10 PM EDT
Location Name Jerome Greene Hall Room 103

The Human Rights Institute & the Center for Gender & Sexuality Law invite you to a lunch discussion with Professor Christpoher McCrudden. The power of the ‘human dignity’ concept is unquestionable. The Ninth Circuit recently drew on the idea of ‘human dignity’ to hold that challenges to jurors on the basis of their sexual orientation were unconstitutional. In opinions by Justice Kennedy, the U.S. Supreme Court has used the concept to uphold the rights of same sex couples, and to uphold limits on abortion. The concept is ubiquitous in human rights law.  But is there a common understanding of human dignity?  As dignity has become more pervasive in human and constitutional rights discourse, it has come under skepticism from very different quarters: from some feminists, from opponents of judicial activism, from post-modern social theorists, from scientists in the life sciences, and from ardent secularists.  And how do dwarfs, rabbits and Mandela fit into this discussion?  Come hear Professor Christopher McCrudden and find out!

Christopher McCrudden FBA is Professor of Human Rights and Equality Law, Queen’s University Belfast and William W Cook Global Professor of Law, University of Michigan Law School, and currently a Fellow at NYU’s Straus Institute for the Advanced Study of Law and Justice. His recent book, Understanding Human Dignity, was published by Oxford University Press in January 2014.

Contact hri@law.columbia.edu with any questions.