Human Rights Student Publications


Author Title University Program Country Genre Year
Fellner, Robert The Right To Be Forgotten in the European Human Rights Regime University of Vienna M.A. Human Rights Vienna Austria Research Paper 2014
Abstract

student publications human rights

A recent judgement by the European Court of Justice has stirred up heated debates among supporters and opponents of the newly introduced right to be forgotten. At the core of the discussion is the question how to balance privacy rights against the right to freedom of expression in the digital age. The following paper considers arguments by both factions, to identify, critically discuss or reject potential harms evolving from the current concept of the right to be forgotten. While supporters of the Court's decision, such as Viviane Reding, who is Justice Commissioner of the European Union (EU), are convinced that the ruling is a step forward in personal data protection, others believe that "only the powerful will benefit"2 from the new right and that it weakens "our democratic foundations"3 and leads to a dangerous rewriting of history. The following paper, which was drafted within the framework of the Vienna Human Rights Master Program, is structured in six chapters, which deal with various historical, legal and technical aspects of the right to be forgotten. The first part will place the right to be forgotten within its historical context and trace its roots within the notion of the right to oblivion, to gain a better understanding of its legal descent. The second chapter will provide a brief overview about the legal documents, which govern the European Data Protection policy with emphasis on the current and future system of the European Union. The third chapter outlines specific cases, which were incisive for the development of the scope and enforcement of the right to be forgotten. The fourth part of this essay will critically discuss possible interferences of the right to be forgotten with other human rights such as the right to freedom of expression, the right to remember and the right to information. Afterwards the paper will take account of the Google Spain v AEPD and Mario Costeja González (ECJ, 2014).

Fellner, Robert The Depiction of torture in Jean Améry's Essay 'Die Tortur' University of Vienna M.A. Human Rights Vienna Austria Research Paper 2014
Abstract

student publications human rights

The following scientific paper is written within the framework of the Vienna Human Rights Master Program in the Winter semester 2014. The paper is structured in two major parts: In the first part I will analyse the depiction of torture in Jean Améry's Essay Die Tortur from a hermeneutic and meta-linguistically point of view. Consequently I will outline distinct elements , whichdefine the notion of torture in Améry's Oeuvre and critically discuss them. In thesecond part of my paper I will analyse textual characteristics of Améry's Essay by looking at the narrative structure, the semantic specifics and grammatical peculiarities. Améry's Essay Die Tortur, first published in 1966 as part of the book "Jenseits von Schuld und Sühne: Überwältigungsversuche eines Überwältigten"1 [Beyond guilt and atonement: attempts to overcome by one who is overwhelmed], describes his direful experiences at the SS-Camp Fort Breendonk and the resulting everlasting trauma. Améry's Essay, which can be attributed to the autobiographical genre of survivor memoirs, adds to the understanding and definition of torture as it leaves behind clichéd discussions about strategy, efficiency and the ticking bomb scenarios that currently dominate the discourse about torture.2 The difficulties to translate Améry's work to English and the resulting loss in precision and understanding have further stipulated me to write on this topic to contribute to the reception of his works. German translations are indicated within the running text in brackets in order to support the readability of the paper.

Fellner, Robert The exploitation of ethnic nationalism to incapacitate freedom of media in Kosovo University of Vienna M.A. Human Rights Vienna Austria Essay 2014
Abstract

student publications human rights

Despite the fact that freedom of media is guaranteed in the Republic of Kosovo under the Constitution which went into force on the 15th July in 2008, studies suggest that Journalists in Kosovo "who venture to criticise government actions or who expose corruption can find themselves publicly accused of 'unpatriotic activities', of being 'traitors to the nation' and 'Serbian spies', or more simply of being 'anti-kosovo'" This essay argues that the political elite in Kosovo exploits the discourse of ethnical nationalism to undermine freedom of media, to cover-up governmental corruption and to hinder critical media in fulfilling its function as a safeguard of a developing, highly fragile nation in its state-building process. It therefore makes use of scientific research and adds a personal note by describing experiences of our field trip to Kosovo in the framework of the newly established Viennese Human Rights Master Programme. The importance of the issue of freedom of media for the case of Kosovo is evident as it "takes place actively in an argumentative way" in contributing "to building a new society." Snyder and Ballentine further argue that "media manipulation often plays a central role in promoting nationalist and ethnic conflict" and continue that it is a conventional wisdom among "human rights activists [...] that a great deal of the ethnic conflict in the world today is caused by propagandistic manipulations of public opinion." Although the amount of open threats against journalists slowly decreased within the last years, political and economical pressure has led to a "growing culture of self-censorship" based on fear and insecurity, which prevents "most journalists in Kosovo from reporting about the eruption of crime, corruption and political and Mafia-related violence." During our fieldtrip i constantly had been engulfed by the feeling that the realities we were presented often merely had been constructed facades, than revealing the reality on the ground. Those communicative structures were well trained and internalised after years of foreign occupation or diplomatic work in a fragile post-conflict society - which precisely defined what to say and what not to say - self-censorship seemed to have become an integral part of daily life communication.

Author Title University Program Country Genre Year