Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Harvard International Review, Annual 1998 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

Universal Declaration of Human Rights


Fifty years ago, on December 10, 1948, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights as a "common standard of achievement for all nations and all peoples." A movement to establish an international bill of rights had gained momentum during the early years of World War II. As the Declaration announced, "disregard and contempt for human rights have resulted in barbarous acts which have outraged the conscience of mankind." Moreover, the world war had convinced many that international aggression, such as that of the fascist powers, was linked to violations of human rights at home--thus helping to justify an international approach to an issue previously considered the internal affair of states. The 1945 Charter of the United Nations first established human rights as an international concern, partly under the influence of a number of vocal non-governmental organizations present at the San Francisco conference, and called for the formation of a commission on human rights.

Between 1947 and 1948, this UN Commission on Human Rights, chaired by Eleanor Roosevelt, drafted a declaration of rights. Britain, France, India, Lebanon, China, and the Soviet Union--but not a single representative of still-colonized Africa--were among the other countries represented on the Commission.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

Universal Declaration of Human Rights
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?