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The Universal Declaration of Human Rights at 70: A moment both to look back and to look forward

British Academy Law Lecture, delivered on 14 June 2018.

On 10 December 2018, it was seventy years since the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly. The Universal Declaration was adopted in the aftermath of the horrors and suffering of the Second World War and has been the cornerstone of the development of a global project committed to the protection of human rights, a project which the Preamble to the Universal Declaration declares to be ‘the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world’. In her lecture, Catherine O’Regan considers not only the history of the adoption of the Universal Declaration and the developments that followed, but she also assesses the future of the Universal Declaration at a time when threats to the human rights project, which it initiated and symbolises daily, seem more menacing.

Professor Catherine O’Regan Hon FBA University of Oxford, former Justice of the Constitutional Court of South Africa

Professor Conor Gearty FBA Professor of Human Rights Law, London School of Economics

Find out more about the British Academy Law Lectures.

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