Documentation and Human Rights
Conceptualizing a Regional, Human Rights-Oriented Documentation Network
التَّوثيق وحقوق الإنسان

في سبيل شبكة إقليميَّة لـ «التَّوثيق في خدمة حقوق الإنسان»
© 2012 UMAM D&R
Arabic and English

As the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) underwent seismic changes brought on by the Arab Spring, questions arose about how to deal with legacies of human rights violations—legacies that went back decades but were finally being brought out into the open via a historical reckoning in public squares and streets.

To better understand human rights and the way it is used to form a vision for the future, UMAM D&R and the International Coalition of Sites of Conscious (ICSC) came together in November 2012 to hold a three-day conference exploring documentation in relation to human rights, which was summarized in a follow-up publication, "Documentation and Human Rights: Conceptualizing a Regional, Human Rights-Oriented Documentation Network."

The conference involved participants from around the region as well as the non-Arabic world, and shared with them the UMAM D&R-inspired "Lebanese model" for dealing with the past through documentation while seeking to answer the simple question: where do we go from here? Trudy Peterson, chair of the Human Rights Working Group within the International Council on Archives (ICA), trained activists in human rights documentation. Discussions explored the possibility of expanding the ICSC MENA network, as well as the status of current initiatives supported by the coalition. Participants came away with a better understanding of human rights documentation in the context of monumental regional changes.

This publication was part of the MENA Sites of Conscience initiative and made possible thanks to funding from the Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen (ifa).