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What is the relationship between culture and human rights? Can the idea of cultural rights, which are predicated on the distinctiveness and exclusivity of a community’s beliefs and traditions, be compatible with the concept of human rights, which are universal and ‘inherent’ to all human beings?
If we accept such compatibility, what is the actual content of cultural rights? Who are their beneficiaries: individuals, or peoples or groups as collective entities? And what precise obligations do cultural rights pose upon states or other actors in international law, or for the international community as a whole?
International instruments on the protection of human rights do not provide self-evident answers to these questions.
This book seeks to analyse these dilemmas and to assess the impact that they are having on international law and the development of a coherent category of cultural human rights.