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When Cultural Rights Meet Cultural Studies: An Analysis of Cultural Rights Through the Lens of Critical Cultural Study of Human Rights


本文嘗試透過「批判人權文化研究」(Critical Cultural Study of Human Rights)的分析取徑,來對國際人權體系下的文化權概念進行探究。傳統來看,人權研究多被視為法學、哲學、和政治學門的研究場域,文化研究過去鮮少跨界參與對話。對此,本文嘗試在「文化作為一種分析方法」的基本構思下,透過概念系絡、爭議提起、制度性回應等三個層次,來梳理文化權概念的建構。通過這三個層次的分析,本文試圖刻畫出「文化作為一種權利」(culture as right),以及權利體系所型塑出的「權利文化」(right[s]as culture),如何最終促使「文化與權利」呈現出相互構築(mutually constitutive)圖像。本文認為,吾人應將文化視為資源,而非限制。唯有如此,才能更為動態地理解權利與文化間的關連,也才能看見「權利本身即為文化」,以及「權利的文化」如何型塑權利的內涵及其架構。也就是說,權利與文化之間,呈現出的其實是一種交雜難解的關係,亦即:「權利既是文化又是權利」、「文化也既是權利又是文化」(right as culture as right/culture as right as culture)。

Parallel abstracts

This article adopts the nascent Critical Cultural Study of Human Rights in analyzing cultural rights. Traditionally, the subject of human rights is dominated by legal approaches as most of the right-related issues are translated into the language of law. Scholars from cultural studies barely see human rights as their legitimate area of study. This resistance against delving into rights considerably limits our understanding. Cultural rights however provide an ideal opportunity to shift our focus to the cultural study of rights. Since culture lies in the very specialty of cultural studies, it seems more than nature to move culture to the heart of this field. This article is an exercise of this "cultural turn" where cultural studies meet human rights. It critically examines cultural rights from three different angles: contexts, actors, and controversies. It then argues that cultural rights are more than just authoritative/legal texts; they are in fact a set of shared understandings and practices of the rights that are constantly in the making and ready to be conceptualized and interpreted. Therefore, the relationship of "right to culture" and "culture to right" are mutually constitutive. That is, rights are considered as both constituting and being constituted by cultural practices and relations. Therefore, their relationships are not "right and culture, "but" right as culture," "culture as right, " and even "right as culture as right/culture as right as culture."


Ahrén, M., 2008. “Protecting Peoples’ Cultural Rights: A Question of Properly Understanding the Notion of States and Nations?” In F. Francioni & M. Scheinin, eds., Cultural Human Rights (pp. 91-118). Leiden, Nederland: Martinus Nijhoff. doi:10.1163/ej.9789004162945.i-372.31
Barth, W. K., 2008a. “Cultural Rights: A Necessary Corrective to the Nation State.” In F. Francioni & M. Scheinin, eds., Cultural Human Rights (pp. 79-90). Leiden, Nederland: Martinus Nijhoff. doi:10.1163/ej.9789004162945.i-372.25
Coombe, R., 2001. “Is There a Cultural Studies of Law?” In T. Miller, ed., A Companion to Cultural Studies (pp. 36-62). Cambridge, MA: Blackwell Publishers. doi:10.1002/9780470998809.ch3
Coombe, R., 2010. “Honing a Critical Cultural Study of Human Rights.” Communication and Critical/Cultural Studies, Vol. 7, No. 3, pp. 230-246. doi:10.1080/14791420.2010.504594