Sunday, August 4, 2019

Health and Human Rights: Thinking outside our Legal Boxes

Lawyers can get hung up on laws.  But human rights belongs to many disciplines, and it's worth exploring how the pieces fit together to promote social change.  The June 2019 issue of the Health and Human Rights Journal, an open-source publication of the Harvard School of Public Health, has a special section on human rights in museums, classrooms, and communities.  Here's a short summary of the articles from the editor, Sarah Willen:

"This special section looks beyond the juridical domain to explore three cases in which unconventional encounters with human rights spurred non-specialists—that is, members of the American public—to contemplate the relationship between health and human rights. In the first case, I write about an  exhibition with a provocative title at a federal museum: “Health Is a Human Right: Race and Place in America.” This exhibit was designed to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Office of Minority Health and Health Equity at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in 2013. In the second paper, Bisan Salhi and Peter J. Brown analyze a pedagogical attempt to spark engagement with human rights concepts among US undergraduate students of global health. In the third paper, Nadia Gaber investigates two efforts to use community-based participatory research strategies to help protect and fulfill residents’ right to water in the American cities of Flint and Detroit, Michigan. Authors of all three papers are medical anthropologists with cross-training in public health or clinical medicine, and all employ qualitative research methods, including audio-recorded interviews, open-ended surveys, and participant observation."

Happy reading!

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