Performing Slave Descent: Cultural Heritage and the Right to Land in Brazil

  • Jan Hoffman French

“Cultural heritage and human rights” is a counterintuitive pairing. Nevertheless, despite its inherent tension between the particular and the universal, cultural heritage and human rights have come to seem a natural marriage of terms. As an indication of the growing recognition that local “aspects of human achievement” have “universal significance” (Cleere 2001: 22) in the post-World War II era, the 1972 UNESCO World Heritage Convention was supplemented in 2003 to include intangible cultural heritage and in 2005 to protect diversity of cultural expressions. These important additions to the World Heritage Convention were intended to implement the 2001 UNESCO Universal Declaration on Cultural Diversity, whose Article 4 designated cultural diversity as a human right: “The defense of cultural diversity is an ethical imperative, inseparable from respect for human dignity.”


Cultural Heritage Brazilian Society Soap Opera Black Identity Black Activist 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jan Hoffman French
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Sociology and AnthropologyUniversity of RichmondRichmondUSA

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