Showing results 541 - 552 of 774 for the tag: Cultural Property.

October 21, 2010

Reconstructing China’s treasures

Posted at 12:58 pm in Similar cases

The looting & destruction of the Summer Palace in Beijing (under the instruction of the Eighth Earl of Elgin – son of Lord Elgin who removed the Marbles from the Parthenon) has had lasting consequences for China – many of the artefacts are still located abroad & many more were destroyed. China is now making efforts to piece together some of the surviving fragments from the building to reconstruct the original artefacts.

From:
Daily Telegraph

Piece by piece, China reconstructs treasures destroyed by British troops
By Peter Foster, Beijing
Published: 6:13PM BST 22 Aug 2010

Almost 150 years after British and French troops looted and destroyed the Old Summer Palace in Beijing, Chinese archaeologists are painstakingly patching together treasured historical artefacts excavated from the ruins.

Archaeology students are piecing together thousands of fragments of Qing Dynasty porcelain that have been excavated over the past 30 years from what is known in China as the “Gardens of Perfect Brightness”.
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October 19, 2010

Is Michelangelo’s David owned by Florence or by Italy?

Posted at 8:05 pm in Similar cases

Although they are not necessarily as high profile as international cultural property disputes, there are many intra-national cases where the both parties involved in the dispute are in the same country. Why this particular dispute has suddenly erupted now probably has a lot more to do with the politics of Berlusconi, along with a need for Rome to exert ownership of the who country than it does about the actual location where Michelangelo’s David is displayed (which as far as I am aware, is not being disputed).

From:
The Guardian

Italian government battles with Florence for Michelangelo’s David
Government lawyers produce nine page document as ‘conclusive’ proof that the sculpture belongs to the state
Tom Kington
Sunday 15 August 2010 21.22 BST

A fierce row has erupted over the ownership of Michelangelo’s David between the Italian state and Florence, the city where the masterpiece is on display.

A symbol of the Florentine Republic’s defiance of its enemies, including Rome, when erected in 1504 at the entrance to Palazzo Vecchio, the town hall, Michelangelo’s portrayal of the slayer of Goliath has remained a mascot for proud locals long after the unification of Italy.
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Smithsonian returns more than 200 artefacts to Yurok tribe

Posted at 7:53 pm in Similar cases

In what must be one of the largest acts of restitution to native Americans (at least in terms of quantity of artefacts), the Smithsonian Institution is to return over two hundred artefacts to the Yurok tribe in northern California. The fact that such major repatriations of artefacts are possible proves that returning some artefacts does not have to threaten the future of museums, despite what many institutions would currently like the public to believe.

From:
National Public Radio

Yurok Tribe Celebrates Reclaiming Sacred Artifacts
by NPR Staff
August 13, 2010

The Smithsonian Institution has returned more than 200 sacred artifacts to the Yurok Indian tribe in Northern California in one of the largest repatriations of Native American artifacts in U.S. history.

The Yurok received necklaces, headdresses and other ceremonial regalia that had been in the museum’s collection for nearly 100 years.
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Who suffers when cultural property is returned

Posted at 1:27 pm in Similar cases

Kwame Opoku comments on Michael Kaput’s article about where artefacts belong.

From:
Modern Ghana

DOES HISTORY SUFFER WHEN CULTURAL ARTEFACTS ARE RETURNED?
Columnist: Kwame Opoku, Dr.
Feature Article | Sun, 15 Aug 2010

This is a question that may surprise many and indeed many may consider it wiser to leave unanswered rather than hazard untenable answers. Michael Kaput has some views on this issue which he expresses in an article entitled, “Whose Heritage? Repatriating ancient treasures seems like a noble cause, but history might end up the loser.” The article has been reproduced in Elginism, a leading website devoted to the question of restitution, especially, the restitution of the Parthenon/Elgin Marbles. (1)

Kaput does not give us any definition of history. If we take history as record of events and developments within a time framework, it becomes difficult to see why the return of the bust of Nefertiti from Berlin to Cairo should be a loss to history. Did history suffer when the Egyptian queen was moved from Egypt to Germany? Or does history only suffer when artefacts are returned from their present locations in the West to their countries of origin?
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October 18, 2010

Canadian First Nations Haida ancestral reburial in British Columbia

Posted at 9:09 pm in Similar cases

The Haida in Canada have secured the return of ancestral remains from the Pitt Rivers Museum in Oxford, which will now be reburied. The handover of the human remains follows extensive negotiations that began in 1996.

From:
QCI Observer

Reburial scheduled for Thursday
August 4, 2010 12:24 PM

A Haida ancestor whose remains have been in England for more than 100 years is on his way home.

The remains were collected by Reverend Charles Harrison from the Masset area and have been held in the Pitt Rivers Museum at Oxford University for many years. Rev. Harrison first came to the islands in 1882.
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The ACCG & Extralegal Cultural Property Policy in the USA

Posted at 8:45 pm in Similar cases

The page linked to below has a link to download a lengthy paper about the application of the National Stolen Property Act to return cultural property to its country of origin. Reading through the document however, starts to reveal that it is aimed mainly at shoring up the position of the Ancient Coin Collectors Guild who are eager to argue that personal ownership (by its members) should over-ride normal legalities. This has been a long running saga, with large amounts of foot stomping in the hope that they can obtain special exemptions or get the US State Department to change its mind on the application of the various laws that are upsetting the ACCG.

Quite why the ACCG should be exempted from the law is entirely unclear to me. They seem to be carrying on the tradition of collecting for personal benefit at the potential detriment to others that ought to have died out at the end of the age of imperialism.

From:
Social Science Research Network

Unveiling the Executive Branch’s Extralegal Cultural Property Policy
Stephen Urice, University of Miami – School of Law
Andrew Adler, University of Miami

August 13, 2010
University of Miami Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2010-20

Abstract:
In this Article we reveal that the executive branch of the United States has consistently – and astonishingly – exceeded constraining legal authority with respect to the movement of cultural property into the United States. To illustrate this assertion, we identify three distinct categories of extralegal cultural property practices. First, we describe how the Department of Justice, misapplying the National Stolen Property Act, has obtained the return of cultural objects to their countries of origin by filing legally-deficient civil forfeiture complaints. Second, we describe how the Justice Department has pursued this same objective by proceeding under a legally-erroneous interpretation of the Archaeological Resources Protection Act. Third, we describe how the Department of State has repeatedly undermined the statutory structure and mandatory criteria of the Convention on Cultural Property Implementation Act, resulting in significant import restrictions on cultural property. All of these practices exceed constraining legal authority and lead to a similar result. Accordingly, we describe this pattern of practices as forming an extralegal cultural property policy. We express no opinion about the wisdom of this policy. Rather, our purposes in unveiling this policy are to promote a rigorous and transparent review of the executive’s practices and to restore the rule of law. In our conclusion we speculate as to why the executive has undertaken these practices and, among other observations, suggest with some sympathy that the current legal framework is outdated.

Working Paper Series

Date posted: August 15, 2010 ; Last revised: August 16, 2010

The full article can be downloaded from the link at the top of the page linked to above (marked one click download).

October 13, 2010

David Cameron’s statements on the Koh-i-Noor

Posted at 1:12 pm in Similar cases

Further coverage of the statements by British Prime Minister David Cameron, that he was not ready to consider Indian requests for the return of the Koh-i-Noor diamond.

From:
Desi Blitz

Cameron and The Kohinoor
Should the jewel in Britain’s crown return to India? David Cameron was challenged on his recent trip to India about the Kohinoor diamond. As Britain seeks beneficial trade with India, questions over ownership of this precious gem arise.
By Roz Euan-Smith • August 12, 2010

The Kohinoor diamond, meaning “mountain of light,” has a tumultuous history. Frequently passing hands as loot, it has belonged to the British since 1849, when the Punjab was formally proclaimed to be part of the British Empire in India. The diamond was given to Queen Victoria of England. Highly prized for its size and brilliance, the diamond is the centrepiece of the late Queen Mother’s crown.

India has repeatedly asked for the jewel to be returned, and David Cameron’s recent visit was no exception. However, he flatly refused to return the diamond.
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September 29, 2010

David Cameron says that Koh-i-Noor will not be returned

Posted at 8:53 pm in Similar cases

It is probably the most famous diamond in the world, with many parties claiming to be its true owners, but David Cameron has stated that the Koh-i-Noor should remain in the UK, with no likelihood of it being returned to India.

From:
Agence France Presse

India wants Kohinoor diamond back. Cameron says no
(AFP) – 4 days ago

NEW DELHI — The real jewel in Britain’s actual crown will not be returning to India, Prime Minister David Cameron said Thursday, as he ruled out any repatriation of the famed Kohinoor diamond.

The 105 carat gemstone set in the coronation crown of the British royals was mined in the southern Indian state of Andhra Pradesh.
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What are the Benin Bronzes

Posted at 8:43 pm in British Museum, Similar cases

The Open University has produced a short video that explains the story of the Benin Bronzes very clearly in less than three minutes. It would be interesting to see if the creator of this clip could be persuaded to do similar things for some other key restitution cases such as the Parthenon Sculptures.

From:
Open University

Prepare to be Inspired…
The Benin Bronzes

Been inspired by the Benin Bronzes? Explore other topics and see what else inspires you.

What do the Benin Bronzes mean to you? Ground breaking art from the African continent, or a shameful symbol of Britain’s Imperial past?

The Arts Past and Present (AA100) investigates the collision of cultures and the impact on today’s world. It’s designed to excite and challenge your thinking on a host of historical as well as topical issues.

Whether you’re in search of Cleopatra, into sacred places, want to learn more about the Dalai Lama, Irish Nationalism or the Benin Bronzes we guarantee to take your interest further

From:
Open University

British Prime Minister’s statements on the Koh-i-Noor diamond

Posted at 8:29 pm in Similar cases

More coverage of David Cameron’s comments about why he felt that the Koh-i-Noor diamond should not be returned to India.

From:
NDTV

British PM David Cameron speaks to NDTV: Full transcript
NDTV Correspondent, Updated: July 29, 2010 14:46 IST

New Delhi: British Prime Minister David Cameron who is on a visit to India, spoke about UK’s relation with Pakistan, WikiLeaks, British economy and Kate Moss among others in an exclusive interview to NDTV’s Dr Prannoy Roy.

Here is the full transcript of the interview:
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Indian TV show asks David Cameron about returning the Koh-i-Noor diamond

Posted at 5:02 pm in Similar cases

British Prime Minister David Cameron has been questioned about the Koh-i-Noor diamond during an interview on an Indian television show. I wold not say that this is an ambush as such – any high ranking British official visiting India ought to have had this item on the list of possible things that they would be asked about.

What is more disappointing is that the Prime Minister justified his answer by falling back on the many times discredited argument that returning it would set a precedent for emptying the museums & galleries of Britain. This argument has been proven in the past not to hold true though. Restitution issues are normally dealt with on a case by case basis – each is looked at on it its own merits. On this basis, the assumption that the return of one item would lead to the return of others implies that these cases have equal justification for return in the first place. So the implication of the statement that one return would lead to others is that all items in the museums are acquired in situations of dubious legality.

A second counter point is the fact that (as shown with the return of native American artefacts in the US) that many groups do not want return – in many cases, people are happy with artefacts where they are & accept that they were acquired legitimately. In other cases, they merely want their ownership of the artefact acknowledged, or rights of access to it.

From:
Daily Mail

David Cameron ambushed on Indian TV over 105-carat Koh-i-noor diamond as country demands its return
By Jason Groves
Last updated at 6:00 PM on 29th July 2010

David Cameron has rejected a plea to return the fabled Koh-i-noor diamond – now the most famous of the Crown Jewels – to India.

There has been a growing clamour on the sub-continent for the repatriation of the gem, and in an interview on India’s NDTV channel the Prime Minister was asked directly if he would give it back.
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September 28, 2010

MP Keith Vaz asks British Government to return the Koh-i-Noor diamond

Posted at 9:11 pm in Similar cases

British MP Keith Vaz has asked the government to return the Koh-i-Noor diamond to India. Moves such as this are to be welcomed, although it is unclear why he sat through thirteen years of his party being in power & showing relative ambivalence to restitution issues, before suddenly raising the issue within a few weeks of being in opposition.

From:
Calcutta Tube

British PM asked to discuss Kohinoor return to India
Posted by IANS-CT in Europe

London, July 24 (IANS) Keith Vaz, the Indian-origin British MP, wants the Koh-i-noor diamond to be returned to India and asks Prime Minister David Cameron to discuss the issue of its return during his visit to India next week.

Vaz said in a statement: ‘I believe that this is the perfect opportunity for the prime minister to discuss the issue of the Koh-i-Noor. It would be very fitting for the Koh-i-Noor to return to the country in which it was mined so soon after the diamond jubilee of the Indian republic and 161 years after its removal from India.’
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