Call for papers to prospective session on cultural property and human rights at the American Anthropological Association meetings in San Francisco (November, 2004)
"Culture at large! The regulation, circulation, and valorization of culture in international law and policy"
That the culture concept is no longer the exclusive domain of anthropology is well established; it is the bete noire of many an academic field, and a matter attended to with some urgency in areas of international and national policy, backed by the coercive apparatus of the state and global capitalism's relentless commodification of everything. But what happens to culture once it is out of anthropologist's hand? This panel examines this question from the vantage point of two interrelated regulatory regimes: that of property rights (intellectual and cultural) and human rights (including the rights of minorities and indigenous peoples). We are looking for papers on how culture is used by these sets of law, and how they impact each other seen through the prism of a culture as subject of law. Papers may address a range of topics including the conceptualization of minority rights, the protection of cultural heritage (intangible or tangible), the regulation of cultural industries and art, the commodification of indigenous cultural property, and human rights to cultural expression. We welcome short papers from all sub-fields of anthropology (and beyond) that deal with these questions in a provocative manner, prompting questions on how the 'culture concept' has been transformed by being made subject--in international law and policy--to ownership, possession and regulation, on the one hand, and valorized as an intrinsic value needing protection (from what?), promotion, and celebration, on the other.
Please e-mail me at the address provided for more information. Please note that the American Anthropological Association's deadline for session proposals AND individual papers in a session is April 1.
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