Author and historian Lynn Hunt shares her work on the history of human rights.
We talk about how the new technology of the novel led to the inspiration for humans rights, the failures of early human rights movements, and what lessons history can teach modern activists today.
Topics Discussed In This Episode
- [1:14] Lynn’s Book “Inventing Human Rights: A History” and the story behind her interest in Human Rights
- [2:47] Is Human Rights an invention or a discovery?
- [4:49] Rights vs. Human rights and how the idea and discovery came about
- [8:00] The rights of “man” and the fight for equality
- [11:34] “The Novel” and the initial seed for human rights
- [18:28] The power of storytelling and lessons from novels creating empathy
- [23:16] Torture punishment and the present
- [29:00] Parallels from history and political reform
- [34:08] Diversity in opinions on rights
- [38:15] The on going expansion of human rights and what modern activists can learn from history
- [41:28] Solving the problem of differences from a story-telling level and the push back on human rights
- [49:26] Authoritarianism and participatory governments
- [50:11] Past Revolutions based in equality and the progression to today
- [55:56] The perceived failures in comparison to the aspirations of the human rights movement
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