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7 The Right of a People to Enjoy Its Culture: towards a Nordic Saami Rights Convention

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Chapter Summary

The proposed Saami Rights Convention reflects a trend within international law and some national legal systems to give more serious attention than before to the interplay between collective and individual rights. It reflects the challenges of multiculturality and the multitude of identities that individuals may possess, and also the need for carving out space for collective rights in order to do justice to existing differences between individuals. Rights of indigenous peoples figure as an important theme in the international discourse on human rights. Firstly, they do constitute a theme in the international discourse on human rights. Secondly, indigenous peoples' rights carry the message of not only individual but also collective rights, or at least certain collective rights, being human rights. A third challenge relates to the recognition of indigenous peoples as peoples among peoples, putting into question the role of the nation state as a cornerstone of modern constitutions.

Keywords: collective rights; cultural rights; human rights; indigenous peoples; individual rights; international law; multiculturality; national legal systems; Saami Rights Convention



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