The Routledge Companion to Cultural Property contains new contributions from scholars working at the cutting edge of cultural property studies, bringing together diverse academic and professional perspectives to develop a coherent overview of this field of enquiry. The global range of authors use international case studies to encourage a comparative understanding of how cultural property has emerged in different parts of the world and continues to frame vital issues of national sovereignty, the free market, international law, and cultural heritage. Sections explore how cultural property is scaled to the state and the market; cultural property as law; cultural property and cultural rights; and emerging forms of cultural property, from yoga to the national archive. By bringing together disciplinary perspectives from anthropology, archaeology, law, Indigenous studies, history, folklore studies, and policy, this volume facilitates fresh debate and broadens our understanding of this issue of growing importance. This comprehensive and coherent statement of cultural property issues will be of great interest to cultural sector professionals and policy makers, as well as students and academic researchers engaged with cultural property in a variety of disciplines. 

chapter 1|32 pages


ByJane Anderson, Haidy Geismar

part I|5 pages

Legal ordering of cultural property

chapter 2|16 pages

Heritage vs. property

Contrasting regimes and rationalities in the patrimonial field
ByValdimar Tr. Hafstein, Martin Skrydstrup

chapter 3|16 pages

The criminalisation of the illicit trade in cultural property

ByAna Filipa Vrdoljak

chapter 5|19 pages

Protection not prevention

The failure of public policy to prevent the looting and illegal trade of cultural property from the MENA region (1990–2015)
ByNeil Brodie

chapter 6|20 pages

A paradox of cultural property

NAGPRA and (dis)possession
BySusan Benton

part II|6 pages

Museums, archives and communities

chapter 7|18 pages

NAGPRA, CUI and institutional will

ByD. Rae Gould

chapter 8|16 pages

Betting on the raven

Ethical relationality and Nuxalk cultural property
ByJennifer Kramer

chapter 9|26 pages

Whose story is this?

Complexities and complicities of using archival footage
ByFred Myers

chapter 10|18 pages

The archive of the archive

The secret history of the Laura Boulton Collection
ByAaron Fox

chapter 11|20 pages

Touching the intangible

Reconsidering material culture in the realm of Indigenous cultural property research
ByGeorge P. Nicholas

part III|5 pages

Local histories

chapter 12|21 pages

On the nature of Patrimonio

“Cultural property” in Mexican contexts
BySandra Rozental

chapter 13|19 pages

Making and unmaking heritage value in China

ByShu-Li Wang, Michael Rowlands

chapter 14|18 pages

Object movement

UNESCO, language, and the exchange of Middle Eastern artifacts
ByMorag M. Kersel

chapter 15|15 pages

Cultures of property

African cultures in intellectual and cultural property regimes
ByBoatema Boateng

part IV|5 pages

Cultural property beyond the state

chapter 16|24 pages

Culture as a flexible concept for the legitimation of policies in the European Union

ByStefan Groth, and Regina F. Bendix

chapter 17|12 pages

The Bible as cultural property?

A cautionary tale
ByNeil Asher Silberman

chapter 18|22 pages

Being pre-Indigenous

Kin accountability beyond tradition
ByPaul Tapsell

chapter 19|28 pages

Frontiers of cultural property in the global south

ByRosemary J. Coombe

part V|4 pages

New and experimental forms of cultural property

chapter 20|13 pages

Who owns yoga?

Transforming traditions as cultural property
BySita Reddy

chapter 21|13 pages

Bones, documents and DNA

Cultural property at the margins of the law
ByLee Douglas

chapter 22|21 pages

Collaborative encounters in digital cultural property

Tracing temporal relationships of context and locality
ByJane Anderson, Maria Montenegro

chapter 23|21 pages

Animating language

Continuing intergenerational Indigenous language knowledge
ByShannon Faulkhead, John Bradley, Brent McKee

chapter 24|19 pages

Ancestors for sale in Aotearoa-New Zealand

ByMarama Muru-Lanning