Thinking About the Elgin Marbles: Critical Essays on Cultural Property, Art and Law

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This book begins with a critical reexamination of the rival Greek and British claims to the Elgin Marbles. That case study identifies the questions that still dominate the growing international debate about cultural property policy and are explored in subsequent essays:

  • Why do people care about cultural property?
  • Is cultural nationalism a sound organizing principle for dealing with cultural property questions?
  • Or is it a relic of 19th century romanticism, kept alive by the power of Byron's poetry?
  • How can cultural nationalism be rationalized with the idea that works of art and antiquities are 'the cultural heritage of all mankind?'
  • What alternative ways are there of thinking about cultural property policy and law?
  • The author examines in particular the law and policy relating to cultural property export controls and the evolution and development of the 1995 UNIDROIT Convention on the Return of Stolen and Illegally Exported Cultural Property.

In the second part of the book the author addresses a number of contemporary art law issues in essays on counterfeit art, the moral rights of artists, the artist's resale right (droit de suite), the litigation over the Mark Rothko estate, and problems of museum trustee negligence, conflict of interests, and misuse of inside information.

The author, a Professor of Art Law at Stanford University, is a leading international figure in cultural property and art law circles.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9789041197771
  • Publisher: Wolters Kluwer Law & Business
  • Publication date: 2/1/2000
  • Pages: 468

Table of Contents

• Thinking about the Elgin Marbles
• Two Ways of Thinking About Cultural Property
• The Public Interest in Cultural Property
• The Retention of Cultural Property
• The Nation and the Object
• A Licit International Trade in Cultural Objects
• Draft Principles to Govern a Licit International Traffic in Cultural Property
• The UNIDROIT Convention: Three Significant Departures from the Urtext
• Archaeologists Are Not Helping
• Cultural Property Ethics
• The Free International Movement of Cultural Property
• The Refrigerator of Bernard Buffet
• The Moral Right of Maurice Utrillo
• The Wrath of Robert Rauschenberg
• Counterfeit Art
• The 'Straw Man' in the Rothko Case– Letters
• Are Museum Trustees and the Law out of Step?

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