On Portraying Human Dignity

22 Pages Posted: 22 Jun 2016 Last revised: 4 Oct 2016

See all articles by Christopher McCrudden

Christopher McCrudden

Queen's University Belfast - School of Law; University of Michigan Law School; University of California, Berkeley - Berkeley Center on Comparative Equality & Anti-Discrimination Law

Date Written: June 18, 2016

Abstract

This article considers what, if anything, the use of Velázquez’s painting Las Meninas contributes to understanding of the conception of human dignity, drawing on several of Velázquez’s other paintings, including Juan de Pareja, The Buffoon Sebastián de Morra, El bufón Calabacillas, and Francisco Lezcano (El Niño de Vallecas). The work of Avishai Margalit, Emmanuel Levinas, and Hans Joas is drawn on to provide a theoretical structure for this endeavor. More broadly, I continue a conversation in the legal academy on how far resort to art forms such as literature and painting may help us understand problematic concepts in law and moral philosophy.

Keywords: Human dignity, Velázquez, Las Meninas, Avishai Margalit, Emmanuel Levinas, Hans Joas

Suggested Citation

McCrudden, Christopher, On Portraying Human Dignity (June 18, 2016). Menschenrecht (Nomos (Baden-Baden), 2016), Forthcoming; U of Michigan Public Law Research Paper No. 511; Queen's University Belfast Law Research Paper No. 12. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2797601

Christopher McCrudden (Contact Author)

Queen's University Belfast - School of Law ( email )

School of Law
Belfast BT7 1NN, Northern Ireland BT7 1NN
United Kingdom

University of Michigan Law School ( email )

625 South State Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1215
United States

University of California, Berkeley - Berkeley Center on Comparative Equality & Anti-Discrimination Law

Boalt Hall
Berkeley, CA 94720-7200
United States

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