INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS LAW

Academic Year 2019/2020 - 1° Year

Course Structure

Academic teaching with a progressive interaction with students, also based upon case-law analysis and group work.


Detailed Course Content

Prof. Pettinato:

Sources of international human rights law: international customary and jus cogens rules, treaties, acts of international organizations and soft law. Interaction between different international legal sources and their relationship with domestic legal systems. The interpretation of human rights international legal principles and rules, with particular regard to treaties.

Subjective scope of application of international human rights rules: entities subject to international human rights obligations and beneficiaries of human rights.

The United Nations’ system of protection of human rights, mainly the U.N. Universal Declaration on Human Rights of 1948 and the U.N. Covenants on civil and political rights and on economic, social and cultural rights of 1966.

The most relevant case-law on the protection of a few selected human rights, such as: the prohibition of discrimination; the right to life and death penalty; the prohibition of torture, inhuman and cruel treatment; freedom of thought, conscience and religion and freedom of expression.

Compliance, monitoring mechanisms and complaint procedures. Enforcement of international human rights law.

Prof.ssa Fisichella:

The second part of the course is focused on regional tools for protecting human rights in Europe, America, Africa and Asia. Relevant treaties and legal instruments that, although not binding, contribute to supporting each individual regional protection system are at stake and they will be debated in class. These systems are then compared under their effectiveness to some specific protections, as for example environmental rights, social rights, the prohibition of discrimination, the protection of the child, cultural identity, the rights of minorities. The regional dimension aims to give emphasis to extension of universal human rights protection within each single legal system.

 

 


Textbook Information

Prof. Pettinato:

SHELTON D. L., Advanced Introduction to International Human Rights Law, Cheltenham-Northampton, 2014, pp. 74-281.

Prof.ssa Fisichella:

1) R. K. M. SMITH, International Human Rights Law, 8th ed., Oxford University Press, 2018: pp. 86-181 (Chapters 6 to 10); pp. 195-218 (Chapter 12)

2) A. HUNEEUS and M. R. MADSEN, Between universalism and regional law and politics: A comparative history of the American, European, and African human rights systems, in International Journal of Constitutional Law, Vol. 16, No. 1, 2018, pp. 136-160

3) B. ÇALI, M. R. MADSEN and F. VILJOEN, Comparative regional human rights regimes: Defining a research agenda, in iCourts Working Paper Series, No. 115, 2018, pp. 1-14.

4) W. J. JONES, Human rights treaty ratification behavior: An ASEAN way of creating regional strandards, in Journal of Global Analysis, Vol. 7, No. 1, January 2017, pp. 9-29.