The Future of International Human Rights Law—Lessons From Russia

26 Pages Posted: 17 Oct 2018

See all articles by Paul B. Stephan

Paul B. Stephan

University of Virginia School of Law

Date Written: October 10, 2018


This paper is a contribution to an upcoming issue of Law and Contemporary Problems devoted to work originating in the Conference, “What’s Next for Human Rights Scholarship?” hosted at the University Virginia School of Law in March 2017. It traces the history and development of the concept of international human rights law from the perspective of the Soviet Union and Russia, and links the present empirical turn in human rights scholarship to empirical work on the institutional foundations of the rule of law undertaken by specialists involved in the failed reforms in Russia during the 1990s. It argues that reconsideration of the Russian context brings to light ways to think about the origins of international human rights law, and what its consequences—more unintended than not—have been.

Keywords: international law, human rights, methodology, Russian law

Suggested Citation

Stephan, Paul B., The Future of International Human Rights Law—Lessons From Russia (October 10, 2018). Law and Contemporary Problems, Forthcoming, Virginia Public Law and Legal Theory Research Paper No. 2018-58, Available at SSRN:

Paul B. Stephan (Contact Author)

University of Virginia School of Law ( email )

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