UChicago Amnesty International Publishes First Annual Journal

“The main purpose is similar to our core mission which is just to raise awareness of issues that people otherwise wouldn’t be aware of.”

By Jonathan Hogeback

UChicago Amnesty International, the on-campus branch of the international human rights organization, is planning to release its first annual human rights journal later this month.

The journal, which will highlight global human rights issues, will contain four or five articles written by UChicago students. It will be distributed around campus and the Hyde Park and Englewood communities, as well as published online.

According to second-year Julian Duggan, the publications chair for UChicago Amnesty, the organization hopes that the journal will inform people about lesser-known issues related to human rights.

“The main purpose is similar to our core mission, which is just to raise awareness of issues that people otherwise wouldn’t be aware of,” he said.

As an example, Duggan spoke of an article on a human rights crisis in Burma, where there is severe religious and ethnic discrimination toward the Rohingya people, a Muslim minority.

“I am fairly in touch with human rights crises around the world, I keep up with this kind of news, but I had never heard of the Rohingya people,” he said.

Other articles being considered for the journal focus on the Syrian refugee crisis, the intersection of women’s rights, water, and climate change, the philosophy of torture within the United States and abroad, and sex trafficking in the United States.

UChicago Amnesty will receive $450 in funding from the Student Government Finance Committee to put toward publication of the journal, according to the minutes from the January 19 committee meeting. The group expects to print between 120 and 145 copies.

In addition to the print version of the journal, the online edition that will be published on UChicago Amnesty’s website will include an extra article or two.

Most of the group’s existing events focus on engagement with the student body, such as the recent Who’s Right For You? event in Reynolds Club, which classified current presidential candidates based on their positions on various human rights issues. Duggan said that he hopes the journal, because it is being distributed beyond the campus community, will increase the off- campus profile of the group as well.

The journal will be the first of its kind from any Amnesty International student group on record with the regional coordinator, according to Duggan.