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Transcript: Human Rights and Social Justice in Latin America and the Caribbean

Hello my name is Kat and I am a third-year GSD and Philosophy student. I'm also a GSD ambassador and today I will be talking to you about my experience taking the GSD optional honours-level module, 'Human Rights and Social Justice in Latin America and the Caribbean'.

I took this module in my second year and before choosing it I only heard really good things about it. After having taken it, I can definitely confirm its really good reputation and I cannot recommend it highly enough. I used to live in the Caribbean, that's why I felt a personal connection to the subject, but even without any personal affiliation, I think this module is very worth considering when choosing your modules because it allows you to understand global problems on a more regional scale, which I think is a really nice combination for a really valuable learning experience.

When you start off with the module, you look at the theoretical and conceptual framework of human rights and social justice. I didn't know too much about these concepts before, but once you learn about them you really understand how imperative they are for sustainable development more broadly. So obviously we know that there's a social pillar of sustainable development, but breaking it down a little bit and looking at concepts such as human rights and social justice really makes you understand how imperative that basic layer of social sustainability is so that global sustainable development can really flourish better.

After looking at the conceptual and theoretical framework, you then delve into different case studies. So we looked at problems in Cuba, Venezuela, Ecuador, Guatemala, Chile, Argentina and I think a few other countries aswell. I really liked this approach because it gave you a more illustrative and realistic approach to the concepts we had looked at and theory at the beginning of the module, and it really supplemented it with evidence.

St├ęphanie, the module convenor and professor, also used lots of visual media, films, videos, but also music to illustrate these regional challenges a bit better. I think this approach has been really nice because it was not only fun, but it gave us again a really good reality check of matters and how they unfolded in different countries.

In terms of assessment, there's a participatory element where you are encouraged to participate as much and as well as you can in seminars. I really enjoyed this because it allowed me to really engage in group discussions, to exchange my ideas and opinions and I think this is really good in terms of having a good learning experience because you learn a lot from how you engage with others but then you also obviously learn about the perspectives and opinions of other people which I think is really, really nice.

Then there is a group presentation component and an essay component wherein both cases you choose a case study and you really go deep with the subject and deep with that case study which again I think is really good because it gives you a nuanced understanding of this particular case. I, for example, chose abortions in Ecuador so it allowed me to look at the legal framework there, to look at some political challenges, but also the influence of the church and religion. I really enjoyed this essay component because it allowed me again to look at one case study in particular and to apply the concepts that we had learnt at the beginning of the module.

So I hope this video might have helped you in choosing your modules according to interests. If you have any questions do not hesitate to come back to me. Thank you very much.