The global impact of populist movements was the topic of “Human Rights in a Time of Populism,” a two-day symposium held at Harvard Law School, where participants examined the challenges that current developments characterized as populist pose to the goals of the international human rights system.
Accepting the Daniel P.S. Paul Constitutional Law chair, Tomiko Brown-Nagin delivered a lecture titled, “On Being First: Judge Constance Baker Motley and Social Activism in the American Century,” which focused on 20th century social reform through the life of the civil rights advocate who became the first female African American federal judge in 1966.
In late May, four Harvard Law faculty — Scott Brewer, Gerald Neuman ’80, Esme Caramello ’99, and Urs Gasser LL.M. ’03 — shared snapshots of their latest research with the Harvard Law School community as part of the HLS Thinks Big speaker series.
“Choosing Not to Choose: Understanding the Value of Choice,” by Professor Cass R. Sunstein ’78 (Oxford). Choice, while a symbol of freedom, can also be a burden: If we had to choose all the time, asserts the author, we’d be overwhelmed. Indeed, Sunstein argues that in many instances, not choosing could benefit us—for example, if mortgages could be automatically refinanced when interest rates drop significantly.
On September 19, Harvard Law School hosted a celebration of the 30-year anniversary of the school’s Human Rights Program (HRP), a home for human rights scholarship and advocacy founded in 1984 by Professor Emeritus Henry J. Steiner.
More than 100 years after the U.S. Supreme Court decided a series of cases that left citizens of territories including Puerto Rico, Guam and the American Samoa with only limited Constitutional rights, Harvard Law School hosted a conference to reconsider the so-called Insular Cases and the resonance they continue to hold today.
Thirty-five years ago, after majoring in mathematics at Harvard and receiving a Ph.D. in the same subject from MIT, HLS Professor Gerald Neuman ’80 switched from the field of math to the field of law—from “truth to justice,” he said in an interview in his office in Griswold Hall. That decision has led to a career of teaching and writing on international human rights law and comparative constitutional law, and to his election last fall to the U.N.’s Human Rights Committee, a body of 18 independent experts who assess and critique countries’ records on civil and political rights.
Tyler Giannini, Clinical Professor of Law, and Gerald L. Neuman ’80, J. Sinclair Armstrong Professor of International, Foreign and Comparative Law, have been appointed co-directors of the Human Rights Program (HRP) at Harvard Law School.
In a recent panel discussion at Harvard Law School, professors William Alford, Grainne de Burca, and Gerald Neuman extolled the benefits of studying, interning, and working abroad in a legal context, and offered practical advice to internationally-minded students about how to get started.
Harvard Law School Professor Gerald Neuman ’80 has been elected to the Human Rights Committee, the premier treaty body in the UN human rights system. The committee monitors compliance by 166 states parties with their obligations under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which is part of the “International Bill of Rights.”