Skip to Main Content
Research Guides

About This Guide

These are the guidelines by which materials are purchased for the Human Rights collections of the UW Libraries (Seattle Campus).  For questions or more information, please contact Emily Keller, Human Rights Librarian.

UW Libraries: Collection Goals

The UW Libraries is committed to providing convenient and timely access to collections and information resources that are outstanding with respect to their quality, depth, diversity, format and currency to support the research and teaching missions of the University of Washington.

Subject Definition

The Human Rights collections support the interdisciplinary tri-campus Minor in Human Rights. Topical emphasis is on political, philosophical, economic, cultural, gender and legal aspects of this complex subject. Formats include electronic resources, both governmental and non-governmental, printed books, serials, media with particular emphasis on documentary films, and archival materials. Intergovernmental organizations (the United Nations, World Heath Organization, the European Union, etc.) as their activities relate to Human Rights, are usually acquired by Government Publications. Legal publications are sometimes collected by the Law LIbrary, but this fund works cooperatively with both Government Publications and Law to guarantee strong resources where warranted by student and faculty research needs. Coordination with the Area Studies and the three campuses is important.

Geographical emphasis varies, reflecting interest and expertise of the teaching faculty.  Local human rights issues are of high interest, as are human rights issues in Latin America, Africa, and Asia. 

Materials in languages other than English are also collected when warranted by interest. Materials in Chinese, Japanese and Korean are collected almost exclusively by the East Asia Library.

Programs & Degrees

The curriculum reflects the rising interest in human rights throughout the world – even as human rights violations persist, and debate continues over the meaning and realization of human rights. Understanding this complex subject requires an interdisciplinary approach, one that combines in a new way the study of philosophy, politics, economics, culture, and law. The Minor in Human Rights s a tri-campus initiative (UW BothellUW Seattle, and UW Tacoma). 

Subject Classification

Library of Congress Classification (LC):

Human rights resources are found in almost every social science and some humanities disciplines. Consequently, LC classifications range widely.  Most typically, materials are found in the GN's,HQ's, HV's, JC's, and throughout the K's. Literary output is found with the literature of the country, in the P's.

Geographic Focus

Geographic focus follows faculty and student interests and generally reflects the Jackson School of International Area Studies programs. The order below is prioritized by current interests, but also reflects the level of collection development that falls more heavily on Human Rights. For instance, faculty interest in Latin America is quite high and the faculty works closely with the Center for Human Rights and the Human Rights Subject Librarian. On the other hand, the Russian subject librarian is very active in collecting human rights materials on Slavic Studies funding.

Latin America
United States
East Asia  
Southeast Asia
South Asia
Near East