Acta Cogitata: An Undergraduate Journal in Philosophy


This paper will question whether States have a right to the antiquities unearthed within their borders. The property claims to these antiquities fall into two categories: (1) claims based on cultural identity and (2) a claim based on territory as found in the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Convention. This paper argues that the cultural identity argument States make is usually inapplicable to cultural property and that territory based claims fail to provide good stewards and leave a puzzle as to what counts for the cultural heritage of states.

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