Human rights

Locke Two Treatises

Locke's Two Treatises

Little recognised at first, and published anonymously, Locke's theories proved influential to the next generation of political thinkers

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Minutes of the committee for the abolition of slavery

Minutes of Committee for Abolition of Slavery

The minutes of the first meeting, on 22 May 1787, of the first great 'lobby group': it campaigned for nearly 50 years to end the vile but lucrative slave trade, not just in Britain but throughout the world

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Rights of Man by Thomas Paine [page:title page]

Thomas Paine's Rights of Man

Thomas Paine was linked with both the American and French Revolutions, and his visionary two-part call for republicanism and social welfare was generations ahead of its time when published in 1791

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Mary Wollstonecraft, A Vindication of the Rights of Woman [page:p.[1]]

Mary Wollstonecraft: Vindication of the Rights of Woman

The firmly-argued book, written in the tumultuous period following the French Revolution, was one of the first great works of female emancipation - but the goals she advocated took many decades to attain

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The Notebook of William Blake [folio: 8r]

The notebook of William Blake

Children's rhyme - or allegory about the French Revolution? The most famous of the English visionary's poems has had academics debating since its appearance in 1794

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Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Universal Declaration of Human Rights

In 1998 Britain passed the Human Rights Act. It recognised in British Law the European Convention on Human Rights, which had been ratified by the Council of Europe in 1953, but its origins go back even before the Universal Declaration of Human Rights 1948

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Wolfenden report conclusion

Wolfenden report

For 400 years male homosexuality was a crime in Britain, punishable by years in jail or hanging. Many reputations and lives were ruined. But this report, controversial at the time, helped change not only the law but public attitudes and acceptance

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