Frontiers of cultural property in the global south

Authored by: Rosemary J. Coombe

The Routledge Companion to Cultural Property

Print publication date:  July  2017
Online publication date:  July  2017

Print ISBN: 9781138812642
eBook ISBN: 9781315641034
Adobe ISBN:


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This chapter delineates the features of a distinctive terrain – emerging political economies and political ecologies in which cultural property’s futures in the Global South are likely to unfold and aspirations for alternative futures politically articulated in a culturally possessive fashion. The position is advanced by way of a contribution to the anthropological literature on “actually existing neoliberalism” (Clarke, 2008; Collier, 2006, 2012; Ferguson, 2009; Hilgers, 2010, 2012; Gershon, 2011; Goldstein, 2012) as an uneven or variegated field of market-oriented regulatory restructuring (Brenner, Peck & Theodore, 2010), with special emphasis on informational capitalism and new forms of cultural governmentality. These include extensions of trade-based intellectual property (IP), in situ means for protecting genetic resources and traditional knowledge (TK), regimes for safeguarding intangible cultural heritage, and new forms of conservation management.

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