EVS134 Introduction to Study of Human Rights

Faculty of Social Studies
Autumn 2012
Extent and Intensity
1/1. 4 credit(s). Type of Completion: zk (examination).
Mgr. Hubert Smekal, Ph.D. (lecturer)
Mgr. Anna Matušinová (seminar tutor)
Mgr. et Mgr. Katarína Šipulová, Ph.D., MSt (seminar tutor)
Mgr. Jana Kyseľová (assistant)
Mgr. Jana Urbanovská, Ph.D. (assistant)
Guaranteed by
doc. PhDr. Markéta Pitrová, Ph.D.
Department of International Relations and European Studies - Faculty of Social Studies
Contact Person: Olga Cídlová, DiS.
Supplier department: Department of International Relations and European Studies - Faculty of Social Studies
Mon 14:00–15:40 P51 Posluchárna V. Čermáka
Course Enrolment Limitations
The course is only offered to the students of the study fields the course is directly associated with.

The capacity limit for the course is 220 student(s).
Current registration and enrolment status: enrolled: 0/220, only registered: 0/220
fields of study / plans the course is directly associated with
there are 78 fields of study the course is directly associated with, display
Course objectives
The aim of the course is to introduce students to basic findings in the area of human rights. Thanks to analysis of historical and philosophical sources of the studied matters, student will be acquainted with general idea of human rights, which will be further particularised by introduction to the most important systems of human rights protection, with the special attention devoted to situation in Europe. Theoretical part of the course will be complemented with actual practical application of human rights protection by international authorities of judicial type. Student will be able to describe basic documents from the field, understand and explain most important theoretical approaches, and, explain functioning and case-law of decision-making of international institutions, and assess practical impacts of human rights protection. Seminars will be dedicated to actual problems of the subject and open discussion is most welcome.
  • 1) Introduction
  • 2) Explanation of basic terms (definitions; universalism; definitions of rights; generations of rights; classifications)
  • 3) Philosophical sources of human rights
  • 4) Various cultures and their approach to human rights
  • 5) Historical development of human rights protection
  • 6) Mid-semester test
  • 7) UN and human rights (the UN Charter, Universal Declaration, International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights)
  • 8) Human rights protection in Europe (Council of Europe, OSCE, EU)
  • 9) Human rights protection in the framework of the Council of Europe (European Convention on Human Rights, European Court of Human Rights)
  • 10) Non-European systems of human rights protection
  • 11) International criminal justice
  • 12) Recent developments in human rights protection, discussion
  • 13) Final test Literature: a full list of literature will be available in the application "Study Materials" before each seminar.
  • HAAS, Michael. International human rights : a comprehensive introduction. New York, NY: Routledge, 2008. xix, 440. ISBN 9780203936269. info
  • DONNELLY, Jack. Universal human rights in theory and practice. 2nd ed. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2003. viii, 290. ISBN 0801487765. info
  • BAEHR, Peter R. Human rights :universality in practice. 1st pub. Basingstoke: Palgrave, 2001. xii, 178 s. ISBN 0-333-96856-5. info
  • FIALA, Petr. Politická dimenze lidských práv (Political Dimension of Human Rights). In HANUŠ, Jiří. Lidská práva. Nárok na obecnou platnost a kulturní diferenciaci. Brno: CDK, 2001. p. 40-55, 15 pp. sborník. ISBN 80-85959-86-0. info
Teaching methods
Teaching methods include: lectures, guest lectures by practitioners, class discussions, precision of argumentation, use of audiovisual materials (documentary movies) followed by discussions.
Assessment methods
The course is finisehd by an exam. Grading: semester is divided into two blocks – first one is oriented towards theoretical aspects of human rights, the second towards international systems of their protection. After each block students write a test in the PC-classroom. Mid-semester test: maximum of 30 points (one open question) Final test: maximum 40 points (multiple choice test) -------------------------------------------------------------
Total: maximum 70 points
A: 70–66
B: 65–60
C: 59–54
D: 53–48
E: 47–42
F: 41 and less
Language of instruction
Further comments (probably available only in Czech)
The course is taught annually.
Listed among pre-requisites of other courses
The course is also listed under the following terms Autumn 2004, Autumn 2005, Autumn 2006, Autumn 2008, Autumn 2009, Autumn 2011, Autumn 2013, Autumn 2014, Autumn 2015, Autumn 2016, Autumn 2017, Autumn 2018, Autumn 2019.
  • Enrolment Statistics (Autumn 2012, recent)
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