Human Rights Socialization During and After the Cold War
CitationAllvord, Chase. 2020. Human Rights Socialization During and After the Cold War. Master's thesis, Harvard Extension School.
AbstractThe purpose of this project is to better understand potential systematic human rights roadblocks of the past so that we may be better prepared to avoid them in the future. It seeks to determine if the socialization of international human rights norms was stifled during the Cold War, a bipolar (two-power) period. As two great powers competed in the zero-sum game of global dominance, there could only be one winner, and the hypothesis presented here holds that human rights suffered as a consequence. The study begins with an examination of how international human rights norms were established amongst nations, with the adoption of the UDHR and its accompanying covenants. Once the human rights framework is laid out, I explore Risse and Sikkink’s (1999) five-step model of human rights socialization, an authoritative representation of how states transform from rights abusers to rights observers. The Cold War policies of the United States and the Soviet Union will then be examined to make the case that the foreign policies of these superpowers were inevitably harmful to human rights. Case-study analyses of two human rights incidents, one during and one after the Cold War, are carried out to observe during which period the international community’s response, and thereby the level of socialization, was more robust. I conclude the project with a statistical analysis of human rights factors from the Cold War and post-war period meant to quantifiably support or reject the proposal, and by offering a few alternative explanations of what role the Cold War played in the story of human rights.
Citable link to this pagehttps://nrs.harvard.edu/URN-3:HUL.INSTREPOS:37364889