Acclaimed author Salman Rushdie returned to Emory University in February as University Distinguished Professor for a public lecture on human rights and a number of events and classes.
“Human beings possess a natural ‘instinct’ for freedom. We prefer liberty to ‘unfreedom’ and that instinct is related to self-consciousness — to knowledge of ourselves as autonomous beings in the world,” Rushdie notes in a description of the lecture. “Out of this ‘liberty instinct’ comes the idea of human rights. These rights involve neither liberal nor Western fictions but rather connect to our deepest needs as human beings,” he adds.