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ERIC Number: EJ779254
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Oct
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-0037-7724
Learning History through the Universal Declaration of Human Rights
Landorf, Hilary; Pineda, Martha Fernanda
Social Education, v71 n6 p322-325 Oct 2007
Although adolescent students often do not have knowledge of specific laws, they usually have a keen sense of justice and fairness. In this article, the author discusses the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) as a powerful tool to channel students' sense of fairness into visible actions. Adopted in December 1948 by the General Assembly of the United Nations, the UDHR is an instrument that can help students anchor the universality of human rights both in their daily lives and in their study of history. By using the content of the UDHR as a blueprint to examine historical issues, students are given the opportunity to discover the universal values that are at the core of this internationally recognized "declaration." Students can also explore, through the eyes of others, how people from different cultures articulate universal rights within their own contexts, and when and why nations drift from universal rights in their policymaking or in practice. Students want, need, and can use the UDHR as a guidepost from which they can grapple with and make judgments about world events, developments, and issues throughout history. Teachers may begin the year by introducing the UDHR and posing key questions based on this pivotal document. Here, the authors describe some strategies and activities for introducing, interacting with and contextualizing the UDHR. (Contains 8 notes and 10 online resources.)
National Council for the Social Studies. 8555 Sixteenth Street 500, Silver Spring, MD 20910. Tel: 800-683-0812; Tel: 301-588-1800; Fax: 301-588-2049; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Guides - Classroom - Teacher; Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A