Undergraduate Module Descriptor

LAW3171: Human Rights and Human Dignity

This module descriptor refers to the 2019/0 academic year.


NQF Level 6
Credits 15 ECTS Value 7.5
Term(s) and duration

This module ran during term 1 (11 weeks)

Academic staff

Dr Catherine Dupre (Convenor)





Available via distance learning


What is it that makes us who we are as human beings? What can be said to be unique and special about us as beings, and as individuals? How can the law recognize this? What fundamental concept lies at the heart of human rights law? In this module you will have the opportunity to address these questions by exploring the rise of the exciting and challenging legal concept of human dignity, which has been important in constitutional and human rights law across Europe for many years and first appeared in the UK common law some fifteen years ago in the wake of the Human Rights Act 1998. Human dignity now lies at the heart of a heated international discussion on its merits, risks and meanings in the field of law, and on the ways in which people’s interests can and should be respected and protected through human rights and constitutional law. This module will take you through some of the key stages of the construction of this new legal concept and engage you in discussing some of the key methodological and theoretical issues underpinning it. The module gives you the opportunity to learn about the latest international theoretical discussions on this subject, while focusing on some essential and challenging issues, such as the connections between dignity and autonomy, equality, integrity and human time The module is also suitable for interdisciplinary pathways.

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