Tag Archives: Human Rights

Tinkering [human rights, contemporary slaveholders, protest drones]

What fun to be asked about one’s own research! After finishing a PhD in sociology (Notre Dame, 2013) I took a job at a School of Public Policy in Europe. Best move ever. In what follows I sketch the three main veins of inquiry that have kept me busy recently.

A human rights approach to the contemporary anti-slavery movement
At present I am engaged in three primary lines of inquiry. The first involves the development of a human rights approach to contemporary slavery and human trafficking. A decade in the contemporary anti-slavery movement convinced me that current thinking within the movement was driven by Christian evangelical’s conceptualizations of salvation (here). But what’s the positive alternative? I initially sketched this out with one of my mentors (Alison Brysk) in a co-edited volume—From Human Trafficking to Human Rights (Penn 2012, here)—and developed more fully in two journal articles. Continue reading

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Filed under Emerging Stars in Social Movement Research, Essay Dialogues

Operation Dixie at the DNC

While the Obama sign waving and t-shirt wearing union members at the Democratic National Convention (DNC) creates a picture of a giant love-fest between unions and the Democratic Party, underneath this façade is a burgeoning labor movement in the South that is shaking the foundation of this relationship.

On September 3, on the eve of the DNC at an overpacked church 7 miles from the convention, 300 labor and community activists held a Southern Workers Assembly. Continue reading

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Reinvigorating Labor Day? “A day for migrant rights, labor rights, human rights”

Many television news segments, newspaper articles and blog posts have, of late, asked what’s  next for the Occupy movement. With spring in the air, apparently much of the Occupy movement’s strategizing has gone into claiming Labor Day as a way to express contemporary discontent and possibly mobilize new participants particularly in smaller cities.  According to Alan Farnham of ABC News, “It’s shaping up to be a busy spring for Occupy.”  Because of its cultural significance, or that it presents a perennial opportunity to raise awareness and promote Occupy goals, May Day might get a makeover in becoming the day for the 99%.

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