Module Details

SC650-7-SP-CO: Sociology Of Human Rights 2: Selected Special Topics

Note: This module is inactive. Visit the Module Directory to view modules and variants offered during the current academic year.

Year: 2017/18
Department: Sociology
Essex credit: 20
ECTS credit: 10
Available to Study Abroad / Exchange Students: Yes
Full Year Module Available to Study Abroad / Exchange Students for a Single Term: No
Outside Option: No

Supervisor: tbc
Teaching Staff: tbc
Contact details:

Module is taught during the following terms
Autumn Spring Summer

Module Description

The primary aim of this module is to engage with the study of genocide, reconciliation, and human rights from a broad sociological perspective. This module seeks to enable students to uncover and analyse the political interests, power dynamics, and relationships that shape not only conflict but also reconciliation programmes, international intervention, and human rights.

The course considers practical and theoretical implications of conducting sociological research about societal breakdown and repair. It includes discussions about human rights systems with particular emphasis on prevention and intervention before and during conflict. It examines some of the problems associated with the institutionalisation of such terms as 'genocide', 'intent' and 'ethnicity'. It also engages with the role of national governments and the nternational community of donors, multi-lateral organisations, and foreign investors in conflict and repair. It discusses numerous themes that emerge from the discourse used by political leaders, victims, and perpetrators including: justice; power; and identity. This module utilises a number of case studies to illustrate the complexities and contradictions that shape the promotion of human rights and reconciliation after apartheid, war, and genocide.

Learning and Teaching Methods


The assessment requirement for students in Sociology Department MA programmes is one essay of 5000 words ( Sociology MA programmes have 20 credits for a one term course)

A list of essay questions will be provided. Essays should be typed, proof-read, and include a bibliography in a standard format. For information on deadlines, submission procedures , and marking procedures, see your module outline.


100 per cent Coursework Mark

Other information

Please collect course outline from the Department of Sociology Graduate Office in Room 6.342


  • Although no single text covers all the module material, you will find the following books particularly helpful for this course:
  • * Lydia Morris (2006), Rights: Sociological Perspectives, Routledge, London.
  • * Richard A. Wilson (2001), The Politics of Truth and Reconciliation in South Africa: Legitimizing the Post-Apartheid State, Cambridge UP, Cambridge.
  • * Martha Minow (1998), Between Vengeance and Forgiveness: Facing History after Genocide and Mass Violence. Beacon Press, Boston.
  • * Ian Hacking (1999), The Social Construction of What? Harvard UP, Cambridge.

Further information