Table of Contents

International Trade in Indigenous Cultural Heritage

International Trade in Indigenous Cultural Heritage

Legal and Policy Issues

Edited by Christoph Beat Graber, Karolina Kuprecht and Jessica Christine Lai

The book is unique in taking a multi-faceted approach to cultural heritage, incorporating discussion on tangible and intangible, moveable and immoveable elements of indigenous peoples’ culture. From the perspectives of several international legal fields, including trade law, intellectual property, cultural property, cultural heritage law and human rights, the book explores how indigenous peoples could be empowered to participate more actively in the trade of their cultural heritage without being compelled to renounce important traditional values. The national and local legal realities in four jurisdictions (New Zealand, Australia, United States and Canada) lay the scene for a wide-ranging analysis of various possibilities and proposals on how this might be achieved.

Chapter 6: Intellectual property rights in indigenous cultural heritage: basic concepts and continuing controversies

Christoph Antons

Subjects: law - academic, cultural heritage and art law, intellectual property law

Extract

The developments at international level in the debate on what intellectual property (IP) lawyers refer to as traditional cultural expressions (TCEs) have to be seen in the context of the decolonisation movements after the Second World War. Post-war developments saw the formation of the United Nations (UN) and the emphasis on human rights in the UN Charter. With this emphasis came development programmes for indigenous peoples and the recognition of indigenous rights in ILO Convention No. 107 of 1957 Concerning the Protection and Integration of Indigenous and Other Tribal and Semi-Tribal Populations in Independent Countries. The decolonisation movements also initiated or renewed a parallel debate about the repatriation of items of cultural heritage. There was a remarkable shift in this discussion from ‘cultural heritage of mankind’ to cultural particularism and an emphasis on ‘cultural property’, as John Henry Merryman has pointed out with reference to the Preambles of the 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict, on the one hand, and the UNESCO Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property of 1970, on the other hand.

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