"The Best of a Bad Job" - Canada and the Development of International Human Rights, 1947-1976

Event Date: 
Tuesday, October 29, 2019 - 7:30pm to 9:00pm EDT
Event Location: 
Regional Centre 1001
Event Fee: 
Free. Everyone is welcome.
Event Contact Name: 
Dr. Michel S. Beaulieu
Event Contact Phone: 
(807) 343-8341
Event Contact E-mail: 
Event Contact Web: 

On 29 October at 7:30 pm, Dr. Jennifer Tunnicliffe (Western University) will be talking about "The Best of a Bad Job" - Canada and the Development of International Human Rights, 1947-1976." 

From 1948 to 1966, the United Nations worked to create an international bill of rights that would provide a common standard for human rights protection around the globe. Canadians celebrate their country’s central role in this endeavour every Human Rights Day. Yet a detailed study of government policies toward these early UN documents tells a different story. Dr. Tunnicliffe will analyze the Canadian government’s initial opposition to the development of international human rights law, exploring how and why this position changed from the 1940s to the 1970s. Jennifer Tunnicliffe takes both international and domestic developments into account to explain how shifting cultural understandings of rights influenced policy, and to underline the key role of Canadian rights activists in this process.

This event is made possible by The Thunder Bay Branch of the Canadian International Council, Lakehead University’s Department of History, and Lakehead International.

It is free and open to the public! Everyone is welcome!

Thunder Bay - Regional Centre 1001

Speaker Bio: Jennifer Tunnicliffe is an Assistant Professor of History at King's University-College at Western University. She was previously an Assistant Professor of History with the Wilson Institute for Canadian History at McMaster University. Her publications include Resisting Rights Canada and the International Bill of Rights, 1947–76, published by UBC Press in 2019, and articles in Histoire Sociale/Social History, History Compass, and  chapters to several edited collections, including a study of Lester Pearson’s relationship with international human rights.