DHP P297: Engaging Human Security
This course enables students to develop a nuanced understanding of the central issues and debates in human security, and also develop a deeper understanding of various aspects of the predicament facing the people of a crisis-affected, conflict or post-conflict country, and international organizations mandated to help address their problems. Human security privileges the security and well being of humans rather than the state. A field of study in international affairs and international relations, human security focuses on issues at the heart of human rights, humanitarian affairs, conflict studies and mediation, economic development, health and wellbeing. Human security approaches are inter-disciplinary and problem-focused, and seek to understand a problem from the perspective of the people most affected, which requires an anthropological sensibility and an appreciation of different social-cultural framings of problems. Thus, the course itself is problem-focused. It takes five central fields, which human security has drawn from and influenced – human rights, humanitarian studies, feminist and gender studies, mediation and conflict resolution, and development – and uses foundational theories and applications in those fields to bring a human security lens to better understand and address current problems in Latin America. The course is also inter-disciplinary and involves readings in anthropology, political science, law, international relations, security studies, humanitarian studies, public health and trauma, conflict resolution, feminist/gender studies, economics, environmental studies, and history.