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Since World War II, human rights have engaged people around the world like perhaps no other discourse. In Finland their embrace represents a shift from ideological homogeneity to pluralism and openness. Human rights education is understood to hold a key role in empowering individuals to become free and equal members of their societies. Yet little empirical scholarship exists evaluating how this goal is met in reality. By combining anthropological approaches with critical legal theory, this study explores the conceptions of knowledge, expertise and learning embedded in the educational activities of a particular network of Scandinavian and Nordic human rights experts. It explores how the ideals of emancipation and equality of the abstract discourse are realized in action.