Harmonizing Cultural IP across Borders: Fashionable Bags & Ghanaian Adinkra Symbols

34 Pages Posted: 6 Oct 2018

See all articles by J. Janewa OseiTutu

J. Janewa OseiTutu

Florida International University (FIU) - College of Law

Date Written: October 5, 2018

Abstract

Global copyright and trademark laws protect symbols, names, and literary and artistic works. However, when their primary significance is cultural, because they are neither individual original works nor symbols that are used as commercial identifiers, intellectual property laws do not protect these symbols or artistic works. This is true, even if these goods are protected under national laws as part of that nation’s cultural heritage. Once these cultural goods cross borders, there is no international law that will enable the country from which these goods originate to assert its rights in other countries. This Article characterizes these cultural goods as trade-related cultural intellectual property and proposes that, with some revisions to existing international agreements, this gap in the law can be addressed.

Keywords: intellectual property, intangible cultural heritage, traditional knowledge, cultural appropriation

Suggested Citation

OseiTutu, Julia Janewa, Harmonizing Cultural IP across Borders: Fashionable Bags & Ghanaian Adinkra Symbols (October 5, 2018). Akron Law Review, Vol. 51, No. 2, 2017; Florida International University Legal Studies Research Paper No. 18-16. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3261324

Julia Janewa OseiTutu (Contact Author)

Florida International University (FIU) - College of Law ( email )

11200 SW 8th St.
RDB Hall
Miami, FL 33199
United States

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