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9 Minorities' Right to Maintain and Develop Their Cultures: Legal Implications of Social Science Research

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Chapter Summary

Nation state ideology, characterized by principle of 'one nation, one state', was in the historical perspective closely implemented in 19th-century Europe. According to that line of thinking, the boundaries of the state, as a political and geopolitical entity, should coincide with boundaries of the nation, as a cultural and/or ethnic entity. European countries have increasingly started to acknowledge the inherent - and due to international migration, growing - ethno-cultural diversity of their populations, and have tried to come to grips with it. This is also reflected in regional European instruments that set out minority rights. While most of these instruments are non-binding, the Framework Convention for Protection of National Minorities, drawn up within the Council of Europe, was the first legally binding international instrument devoted entirely to minority rights. This chapter looks at the right of persons belonging to minorities to maintain and develop their culture in light of some contemporary social science research.

Keywords: Convention for Protection of National Minorities; Council of Europe; cultural right; international instrument; legal implications; minority rights; social science research



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