Robert H. Kirschner, MD, Human Rights Memorial Lecture

This annual lecture series honors the life and work of Robert H. Kirschner, MD, noted forensic pathologist and a founder of the University of Chicago Human Rights Program.

Robert H. Kirschner, MD, 1940-2002: Robert H. Kirschner, MD, a clinical associate in the Department of Pathology and Pediatrics and a founding faculty board member of the Human Rights Program at the University of Chicago, died at the University of Chicago Hospitals on September 15, 2002. Dr. Kirschner was an internationally recognized authority on forensic pathology, human rights violations, police brutality, torture and child abuse and an outspoken opponent of the death penalty. He also supported Asociacion Pro-Busqueda, a past project partner of the Human Rights Program, in their mission to reunite Salvadorean families with the children who disappeared or were adopted by U.S. families during that country's civil war. To learn more about the life and work of Dr. Kirschner, see:


2014 Robert H. Kirschner, MD, Human Rights Memorial Lecture

June 5, 2014 at 6:30pm

"Health and Human Rights: Lessons from Haiti and Rwanda"

Paul Farmer, PhD, MD; Co-Founder, Partners in Health; Kolokotrones University Professor of Global Health and Social Medicine, Harvard Medical School

Paul Farmer is a physician and anthropologist who works and writes on health, human rights, and the consequences of social inequality. He will reflect on his experience working in Haiti, the only republic to arise from a successful slave revolt, and in Rwanda, now twenty years past the genocide.

Location: International House Assembly Hall (1414 East 59th Street, Chicago, IL)

This event is free and open to the public. Doors open at 6:00pm. Reception to follow the lecture. This event is co-sponsored by the International House Global Voices Program.

More details coming soon!


Past Lectures

June 6, 2013

"What Has the International Human Rights Movement Accomplished?"

Aryeh Neier, Founder of Human Rights Watch [view poster, program]

May 31, 2012

"Reconnecting in the Aftermath of El Salvador's Civil War: The Joys and Challenges of Finding Family"

Prof. Margaret E. Ward and Nelson Ward de Witt

View poster, View program

June 2, 2011

"Rage Against the Machine: Torture, Bystanders and the Failure of Journalism”

John Conroy, Author and Journalist

View poster, View program
[watch: mov]

June 3, 2010

“Literature and Individual Sovereignty”

Aleksandar Hemon, Author

View poster, View program.
[watch & listen: mov & mp3]

April 15, 2009

“Prevention, Peacemaking and Transitional Justice”

Juan Méndez, President, International Center for Transitional Justice

View poster
[watch: mov]
[listen: mp3]

June 5, 2008

“House of Secrets: The Place of Storytelling in Human Rights”

Alex Kotlowitz, Journalist and Author

View poster
[watch & listen: House of Secrets: The Place of Storytelling in Human Rights]

April 12, 2007

"Truth, Lies, and Duct Tape"

Sara Paretsky, Author

View poster