The Novel and the Origins of
The Intersection of History, Psychology and Literature.
April 8, 2002
TIME: 7:00 pm
School, Room 190
April 9, 2002
Humanities Center, 424 Santa Teresa Street
Human rights are the lingua franca
of modern political discussion, but the very idea is based on a
stunning historical paradox: human rights are taken to be "self-evident"
truths, as Thomas Jefferson put it, but claims about their self-evidence
were only made beginning in the mid-eighteenth century. What made
such claims believable at that moment and not before? What role
did the "rise of the novel" play? Thinking across the
boundaries of the usual disciplinary divisions can help make sense
of this critical element in the definition of modernity.
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