Previous Speaker Series Events

The Human Rights Happy Hour Speaker Series features scholars and practitioners from around the world. These multidisciplinary lectures foster dialogue around complex human rights issues. Each lecture draws a wide array of students, faculty, and community members, creating an atmosphere characteristic of the collaborative nature of human rights work.

  1. Speaker:
    • Associate Professor, Department of Political Science and Public Administration, Babcock University, Nigeria
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    • Associate Professor, Department of Political Science and Public Administration, Babcock University, Nigeria
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    • Professor, Department of History, Centre for Peace Studies, McMaster University, Canada
    Rapoport Center Visiting Professor, Dr. Bonny Ibhawoh, will participate in a panel at the 18th Annual Africa Conference.
  5. Speaker:
    • Professor, Department of History, Centre for Peace Studies, McMaster University, Canada
    Rapoport Center Visiting Professor, Dr. Bonny Ibhawoh, will participate in a panel at the 18th Annual Africa Conference.
  6. Speaker:
    • Lecturer, Department of Sociology and Senior Fellow, Kleinman Center for Energy Policy, University of Pennsylvania
    Among the major changes in employment in recent decades, the rise of independent contracting is one of the least understood. In fact, why less-skilled workers choose to become independent contractors has not been studied in detail at all.
  7. Speaker:
    Since being retained by the Chagos Islanders in 1997, Robin Mardemootoo has litigated in the UK, the US, and now before the ICJ at The Hague. He is the leading lawyer coordinating the crossborder litigation, which seeks to return the Chagossian people to their homeland and compensate them for the abuses they suffered at the hands of the US and UK governments.
  8. Speaker:
    • Associate Professor of Sociology, University of California-Santa Barbara
    Sarah Thébaud, Associate Professor of Sociology, University of California-Santa Barbara, will discuss her research on gender inequalities and work practices.
  9. Speaker:
    • Distinguished Professor Emeritus in Latin American Literatures and Culture - Ohio State University
    Dr. Rodríguez's presentation explores: 1) the nature, possibility or impossibility of the political, examining the makeup of the social subject—here woman as urban guerrilla; and 2) the understanding of ‘the feminine’ as an entry point to the maleability or transformability of being.
  10. Speaker:
    Clark will discuss the work of Columbia University’s Center for Oral History Research in conversation with the Rapoport Center’s Archives and Human Rights working group.
  11. Speaker:
    This talk will explore the ethical, legal and constitutional issues that have arisen since the designation of Guantánamo Bay as a site of incarceration and torture for people suspected of terrorism against the United States, following the events of September 11, 2001.
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    Clark will visit Professor Ann Cvetkovich’s Archival Fictions seminar in order to discuss Columbia University’s September 11, 2001 Oral History and Narrative Memory Project.
  13. Graduate students who undertook Summer Fellowships in Human Rights will reflect on their field work, and share their experience working at some of the most cutting-edge human rights and social justice organizations around the world. Free pizza and refreshments!
  14. Speaker:
    • Professor of History, University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee
    This talk explores some of the exploits of the American Committee for the Protection of the Foreign Born (ACPFB), an immigrant rights organization operative between 1933 and 1982.
  15. Arne Kalleberg from the University of North Carolina will present "Precarious Lives: Job Insecurity and Well-Being in Rich Democracies" as part of the Population Research Center Brown Bag series.
  16. Speaker:
    Dietrich Thränhardt, one of the most renowned European immigration scholars, will discuss the influx of Syrian refugees to the European Union since 2015, Germany's contradictory responses to this refugee immigration, and the European Union's struggle to find a common approach in the field of migration policies.
  17. Speaker:
    • Senior Counsel, Brennan Center for Justice, NYU School of Law
  18. Speaker:
    Santos will be presenting his latest work, “Lessons from the TPP and the Future of Labor Chapters in Trade Agreements.” His piece uses the failure of the Trans-Pacific Partnership to think through the merits of traditional “trade-labor” linkages, and explores various ways to “retool” the global economic regime to address broader distributive concerns and ameliorate the ill-effects of trade liberalization on labor, such as job losses and wage declines.
  19. The Human Rights Clinic at Texas Law will present its report "Control...Over the Entire State of Coahuila: An analysis of testimonies in trials against Zeta members in San Antonio, Austin, and Del Rio, Texas."
  20. Speaker:
    • Associate Professor of Anthropology, Sabanci Universitesi, Istanbul; Visitor, Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton
    Based on long-term ethnographic research in Turkey among ethnically Turkish labor migrants from Bulgaria, Parla’s presentation will inquire into the appeal and limits of the term “precarity,” an increasingly ubiquitous designation to refer to a generalized condition of insecurity and vulnerability.
  21. Speaker:
    • Climakaze Artistic Director, FUNDarte, Inc. & Americas Program Coordinator, National Performance Network
    Cultural response to climate change is now inevitably global and local, telling specific stories about people, the land where they live and unique ecosystems, and communities of solidarity. This presentation will address these themes through discussion of Elizabeth Doud’s performance research project and other cultural organizing work.
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    Join a discussion co-sponsored by SAI and led by Dr. Sarojini Nadimpally on what privacy rights mean in the current Indian political context. 
  28. Central American migration to the U.S. and to Mexico presents unique challenges in the current political environment. This panel of Mexican and U.S. migration experts will discuss the obstacles facing Central Americans who are fleeing violence and seeking protection.
  29. Speaker:
    • Human Rights Activist; Rapoport Center Visiting Practitioner
    Human rights activist Khushi Kabir will explore the state of democracy and rights in Bangladesh. Lunch provided!
  30. Speakers:
    • Contributing Writer, National Geographic
    • Executive Director, Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting
    Join us for a conversation with award-winning journalist Cynthia Gorney about her Pulitzer Center-supported National Geographic project, "For Widows, Life After Loss."
  31. Speaker:
    • Professor of Political Science, Brooklyn College and Graduate Center; Doctoral Program in Criminal Justice, Graduate Center, City University of New York
  32. Speaker:
    • Associate Professor and Senior Researcher, Centre on Migration, Policy and Society (COMPAS), University of Oxford
    In 2015, about 850,00 people, a quarter of all arrivals in Turkey, moved on irregularly to the EU. This represents a sudden change from 2014, when only 51,000 people left Turkey for the EU. What was going in Turkey in 2015 that can explain these processes?
  33. Speaker:
    • Associate Professor and Senior Researcher, Centre on Migration, Policy and Society (COMPAS), University of Oxford
    Policy debates and media coverage during the migration ‘crisis’ gave a misleading impression of a linear, uninterrupted flow of people towards Europe. Instead, research found that this migration was the result of a temporary merger of diverse migrations of a huge range of people along many routes.
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  35. Speakers:
    • Louis A. Horvitz Professor of Law, Harvard Law School
    • Lloyd M. Bentsen Chair in Law & Associate Dean for Research, Texas Law
  36. Speaker:
    • Thomas A. and Currie C. Barron Family Professorship in Humanities and Environment, Princeton University
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    • Assistant Research Professor & Associate Director, Minor in International Development and Conflict Management, University of Maryland
    Professor Kosko will discuss how the formal categorizing of different types of ethnocultural minorities affects how international human rights law can protect them.
  40. Speaker:
    • Assistant Professor of Law and Economics, Goethe University, Frankfurt
  41. Speaker:
    • Alliance to Break the Silence and End Impunity
    Please join us for a talk on the recent landmark case that tried crimes against humanity for sexual violence and sexual and domestic slavery committed against Q’eqchí women at Sepur Zarco military base in Guatemala. Light lunch provided.
  42. Speaker:
    • Helen H. Jackson Endowed Chair in Human Rights and Director of the Center for Human Rights, University of Washington
    As part of LLILAS Benson's “Digital Scholarship in the Americas” speaker series, Angelina Godoy discusses the amnesty law in El Salvador, examining the possible role of digital archaeology in the pursuit of truth and justice there.
  43. Speaker:
    • Director of Research Centers and Senior Lecturer, University of Wisconsin Law School
  44. Speaker:
    As part of the Turkish Ottoman Lecture Series, Dr. Gurbuz will present the situation of the Kurds in Turkey as a case study for attempting to understand the conditions that foster nonviolent civic engagement in emerging civil societies.
  45. Speakers:
    • Program Manager and Reproductive Rights Policy Specialist, Public Leadership Institute
    • Clinical Professor and Director, Human Rights Clinic
    • Texas State Representative
    This panel will discuss how human rights are codified at the local and state level in Texas.
  46. Speaker:
    • Associate Professor of Asian American and Asian Diaspora Studies, University of California, Berkeley
    Professor Khatharya Um will discuss her recent book From the Land of Shadows (NYU Press, 2015), which examines the factors and conditions that produced the genocidal outcome in Cambodia, as well as the struggle of Cambodians, both in Cambodia and in the diaspora, to live with and transcend this historical trauma in the aftermath.
  47. Speaker:
    • Attorney and Counselor at Law, Hendler Lyons Flores
    Austin attorney Scott Hendler will talk about his experience litigating against American corporations on behalf of Central American agricultural workers.
  48. Speakers:
    • Adjunct Professor, Universidad Austral de Chile School of Law; Co-Director, Observatorio Ciudadano (Citizens’ Watch)
    • Director of Research and Advocacy, Worker Rights Consortium
    • Co-founder of Colibrí Consulting – Certification for Sustainable Development
    • Postdoctoral Fellow (2015-2017)
    • Co-founder and Senior Investigator, Fair Food Standards Council
    The roundtable will consider the possibilities and limitations of various forms of certification regimes for the realization, enforcement and governance of human rights.
  49. Speaker:
    • Deputy Chief, Special Litigation Section, Justice Department Civil Rights Division
    Please join us for a talk by Christy Lopez, a national expert on policing who led the DOJ’s investigation of the Ferguson, Missouri, police department.
  50. Speaker:
    • Advocate of the Supreme Court of Pakistan, Human Rights Activist
  51. Speakers:
    • Coordinator, Council of Indigenous and Popular Organizations of Honduras (COPINH)
    • Executive Director, The Black Fraternal Organization of Honduras (OFRANEH)
    A Dialogue with the 2015 Rothko Chapel Óscar Romero Award Recipients
  52. Speaker:
    • Professor of Development Studies and International Relations, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London
  53. Speaker:
    • Senior Counselor to the Director of US Citizenship and Immigration Services, Department of Homeland Security (
  54. Speaker:
    • Associate Professor of History, Chair of the Historical Studies Department, and Director of The Janey Program in Latin American Studies, The New School for Social Research
  55. Speaker:
    • Donald M. and Constance H. Rebar Professor of the Humanities; Professor of English and Director of Creative Writing, Colgate University
  56. Speaker:
    • Professor of Law and Coordinator of the Migration & Human Rights Program, National University of Lanús (Argentina)
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  59. Speaker:
    • Visiting Professor, Middlesex University London, and Convenor, The Global Institute for the Prevention of Aggression
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  62. Speakers:
    • Professor and Associate Chair of the Department of Political Science, Washington University in St. Louis
    • Associate Professor of Political Science and Director of the Center for the Study of Law, Politics, and Economics, Emory University
  63. Speaker:
    • Associate Professor of Political Science, University of New Mexico
  64. Speaker:
    • Sidney W. Souers Professor of Government and Director of the Program on Citizenship and Democratic Values, Washington University in St. Louis
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  66. Speaker:
    • Professor and Director of the Center for Human Rights, Universidad Diego Portales (Chile)
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  68. Speaker:
    • Assistant Professor of Gender and Women's Studies and Asian American Studies, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
  69. Speaker:
    • Professor, School of Law, Victoria University of Wellington
  70. Speaker:
    • Assistant Professor of Public Policy, University of Michigan at Ann Arbor
  71. Speaker:
    • Associate Professor of Law & Director, Human Rights Center, University at Buffalo Law School, SUNY
  72. Speaker:
    • Director, Department of Political Science and International Relations, Universidad Torcuato Di Tella (Argentina)
  73. Speaker:
    • Professor and Chair of Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, Yale University
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  75. Speaker:
    • Professor, School of International Service, American University (AU)
  76. Speaker:
    • Professor of Law and Policy at The City University of New York
  77. Speaker:
    • Professor and Director of the Graduate and Postgraduate Program in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences at the National University of Rio Negro (UNRN) in Argentina
  78. Speaker:
    • Professor, Universidad de San Andrés in Buenos Aires, Argentina
  79. Speaker:
    • Leitner Professor of Philosophy and International Affairs at Yale University
  80. Speaker:
    • Assistant Professor, Rhetoric Department at the University of California, Berkeley
  81. Speaker:
    • Associate Professor, History Department at Rice University in Houston, Texas
  82. Speaker:
    • Professor of Law, University of Toronto
  83. Speakers:
    • Associate Professor of Government and Co-Director, Rapoport Center for Human Rights and Justice
    • Senior Economist in the Development Research Group of the World Bank
  84. Speaker:
    • Universidad de Chile and past president, Inter-American Court of Human Rights
  85. Speaker:
    • William Ray Forrester Professor of Public and Constitutional Law, Tulane University
  86. Speakers:
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  88. Speaker:
    • Professor of Anthropology, Pontífica Universidad Javeriana, Bogotá, Colombia
  89. Speaker:
    • Morris Wasserstein Public Interest Professor of Law & Faculty Director of the Child Advocacy Program, Harvard Law School
  90. Speaker:
    • South African born novelist, playwright and memoirist
  91. Speaker:
    • Director, Bureau pour le Volontariat au Sevice de l'Enfance et de la Santé (BVES), Democratic Republic of the Congo
  92. Speaker:
    • Associate Professor & Department Chair, Law and Society, University of California, Santa Barbara
  93. Speaker:
    • Cassius Marcellus Clay Fellow, Department of History, Yale University
  94. Speaker:
    • Nobel Peace Laureate (2003), civil rights activist and lecturer in law, University of Tehran
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    • Professor in the Department of Government at the University of Texas
  98. Speaker:
    • Visiting Professor at the University of Baltimore School of Law
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    • Professor of Constitutional Theory and Political Philosophy at the Universidad de Buenos Aires and at the Universidad Torcuato Di Tella
  102. Speaker:
    • Distinguished Lecturer in Journalism and African Politics at Simmons College
  103. Speaker:
    • Associate Professor of Medicine and Assistant Dean of Clinical Skills Integration, University of Texas at Austin Dell Medical School
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  107. Speaker:
    • Associate Professor of Southeast Asian Studies, National University of Singapore
  108. Speaker:
    • William C. Graham Professor of Law, University of Toronto
  109. Speaker:
    • Associate Professor of Practice, Gallatin School of Individualized Study, New York University
  110. Speaker:
    • Professor of Sociology and Women's Studies and Director of the Women's Studies Program, Purdue University
  111. Speaker:
    • Associate Professor, Universidad de los Andes School of Law
  112. Speakers:
    • Minerva House Drysdale Regents Chair in Law and Founder & Co-Director, Rapoport Center for Human Rights and Justice
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  123. Speaker:
    • Associate Professor of Law, Notre Dame Law School and Member, Inter-American Commission on Human Rights
  124. Speaker:
    • Senior Lecturer in Law, Murdoch University, Perth
  125. Speaker:
    • Associate Professor of Government and Co-Director, Rapoport Center for Human Rights and Justice
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  127. Speaker:
    • Professor, Faculty of Law and the Women's and Gender Studies Institute, University of Toronto
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  129. Speakers:
  130. Speaker:
    • Associate Professor of Law, University of Utah
  131. Speaker:
    • Lecturer, Faculty of Law, University of Cambridge, & Director of Studies & Fellow of Emmanuel College, Cambridge
  132. Speaker:
    • Clinical Professor of Law and Director, International Human Rights Law Clinic, University of California, Berkeley
  133. In this workshop, an interdisciplinary cohort discussed facets of the broad topic of Black and indigenous land rights in Latin America, promoting dialogue across the academic/activist divide.
  134. Speaker:
    • Senior Lecturer, Cornell University School of Industrial and Labor Relations
  135. Speaker:
    • Deputy Director, Americas Division, Human Rights Watch
  136. Speaker:
    • Professor, University of Pittsburgh Law School
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  139. Speaker:
    • Lecturer, Department of Laws, University College London