Professor David Abraham recently spoke at a major international conference on human rights held in Jena, Germany. Titled "Toward a New Moral Order," the conference drew speakers from four continents who discussed and debated the historical and legal meaning of human rights around the world over the past century. Focusing on the 1970's, Abraham was quoted in both the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung and theSüddeutsche Zeitung, Germany's two leading venues.
Abraham analyzed the problem of "instrumentalization" or how noble human rights claims move from being instruments for achieving those ends to turning into political tools operating for the benefit of those invoking them. Ultimately, he concluded, there was no reason to be scandalized because all rights are instruments for those who hold them. The conference will soon be published as book by Wallstein Press, a leading German publisher. Professor Abraham teaches Property, Immigration & Citizenship Law, Citizenship and Identity, Law and the Transition to Capitalism and Law and Social Theory and has been widely published in each of those areas.