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The Human

The figure of ‘the human’ is basic to the notion of a shared species and correlated normative constructs like human rights, legal personhood, and citizenship. The idea of universal humanity features centrally in Western culture, though it is often taken to be natural rather than historically shaped, and often articulated without adequate attention to sex and gender, implicit racialization, and the existence of different understandings from different traditions.


Ideas of the human have often been a neglected background to Western social theory; nonetheless, they are crucial and more problematic than commonly assumed. They are also deeply entwined with notions of the person, self, and individual. Craig Calhoun's inquiries take up this entangled conceptual history and its relationship to more material and practical transformations of the human being. 

Work in Progress

The Human in Human Rights - three lectures Dr. Calhoun gave at the London School of Economics.

The corporation as a person. An inquiry into legal, political, and cultural conceptions of the corporation as an autonomous sovereign or quasi-sovereign being. 

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