In her talk, Professor Song will argue for a human right to democracy. She understands this right as offering, in a way that is consistent with understanding persons as equals (i) an institutional safeguard against threats to basic interests in political participation; and (ii) a solution to the problem of coordinating diverse political opinions.
Her argument issues from a general account of human rights as including in their content a conception of persons as equals. It is thus also a rejection of what she calls the discontinuity thesis, or the influential view that democracy is robustly egalitarian in a way that human rights are not. She argues that the considerations to which proponents of the discontinuity thesis appeal "about political obligation, self-determination, and toleration" fail to make the thesis persuasive.