Mission of the Designated Emphasis

The DE in Human Rights provides graduate students in affiliated programs the opportunity to supplement their Ph.D. with a specialization in the academic study of Human Rights. The mission of the DE is to promote and build capacity in the academic study of Human Rights and the training of graduate students in the field of Human Rights in the Ph.D. programs throughout the campus.

Affiliated Ph.D. Programs

Students in the following Ph.D. programs are eligible to pursue a Designated Emphasis in Human Rights:

  • Cultural Studies
  • English
  • History
  • Native American Studies
  • Spanish
  • Sociology
  • ​Study of Religion
  • ​Performance Studies

Affiliated Faculty

  • W. Flagg Miller (Religious Studies
  • David Copp (Philosophy)
  • Corrine Decker (History)
  • Susan Miller (History)
  • Victoria Langland (History)
  • Charles Walker (History)
  • Almerido Ojeda (Linguistics)
  • Marisol De La Cadena (Anthropology)
  • Diane Wolf (Sociology)
  • David Kyle (Sociology)
  • Heghnar Z. Watenpaugh (Art History)
  • Emilio Bejel (Spanish and Portuguese)
  • Cristina Martinez-Carzo (Spanish and Portuguese)
  • Stefano Varese (Native American Studies)
  • Jessica Perea (Native American Studies)
  • Ines Hernandez-Avila (Native American Studies)
  • Liza Grandia (Native American Studies)
  • Zoila Mendoza (Native American Studies)
  • Elisabeth Middleton (Native American Studies)
  • Justin Spence (Native American Studies)




Course Requirements

All four course requirements must be completed prior to the Qualifying Exam:

  • HMR 200A. History, Theory and Criticism of Human Rights. (cross-listed with Study of Religion course REL 231E)
  • HMR 200B. Memory, Culture, and Human Rights. (cross-listed with Cultural Studies course CST 210)
  • One course or course of study in the student’s home graduate department or group, relevant to the study of Human Rights or in which the student may conduct significant research on a topic relevant to the study of Human Rights. This course or course of study shall be identified in advance and in consultation with the student’s Human Rights DE advisor.
  • One reading or independent study course (such as HMR 299) with a faculty member of the Human Rights Designated Emphasis Group

**WINTER 2019- Sociology 174-Sociology of the holocaust approved as elective toward DE in Human Rights

**SPRING 2019 - Sociology 295- Collective Memory, Collective Trauma, and Attempts at Collective Healing approved as elective toward DE in Human Rights.

**WINTER 2020 - History 201W- Global Migration, approved as elective toward DE in Human Rights

This graduate seminar examines the historical literature on migration in a global perspective, focusing on the nineteenth century through the present. It focuses on theoretical approaches to the study of migration as well as on case studies. The readings emphasize major themes and questions in migration theory, including free and forced migrations; networks and diaspora; labor migration; refugees; ethnicity, race, gender, and class; empire; and questions of border surveillance.

Readings each week will comprise a book and selection of articles. Books feature recent works in migration studies, and are paired with canonical articles in migration theory. Students will prepare 1) weekly reading responses, 2) occasional presentations, and 3) seminar paper related to their field of interest for a final grade. Topics, readings, and schedule subject to modification.

Book List

Christopher, Pybus, and Rediker, eds., Many Middle Passages
Delgado, Making the Chinese Mexican
Guglielmo, Living the Revolution
Kang, The INS on the Line
Arsan, Interlopers of Empire
Hahamovitch, No Man’s Land
Moch and Siegelbaum, Broad is My Native Land
Besterman, Making Refuge


Dissertation & Examination Requirements

The dissertation research topic must employ in whole or in part the academic study of Human Rights.  The Qualifying Exam Committee must include a faculty member of the DE in Human Rights and the exam must include a question relevant to the DE.  A faculty member of the DE must also sit on the Dissertation Committee. Typically the same DE representative will be on both committees, but this is not a requirement.

Paperwork Requirements

For assistance obtaining signatures on your paperwork, please contact the DE Staff, housed in the Department of Languages & Literatures: Maria Ruby, 210 Sproul, mruby@ucdavis.edu. The following forms are required for the DE: