Culture and Human Rights Essay Example

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  7
Wordcount:  1836 Words
Date:  2022-05-17

Culture can be defined as the collective mind programming, which manifests not only in values and on superficial ways in terms of rituals, heroes, and symbols. (Hofstede, 2013) .In a philosophic perspective, Culture is defined as an aspect of human activities that are socially transmitted. On the other hand, human rights are basic freedom and rights which belongs to every individual. They can also be defined as the norms or moral principles which describes some certain human behavior standard and are protected by legal rights. Culture is a human right issue and its destruction tend to harm human rights such as freedom rights of religion and thought and freedom of expression right. Therefore, examining the relationship between culture and human right in philosophy is important because the culture has traditionally been treated like an object where cultural rights in human rights law have been conceived as the right of consumption and access. This conception has appeared to be less important to human dignity than it is to civil, political and economic rights.

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According to UNESCO culture should be understood to mean shared way of living amongst people including their understanding, knowledge, values and skills and what is perceived to be meaningful and unique. UNESCO report suggests that right to culture be presented as a way of life right. This is because it holds cultural freedom where it refers to rights of people or group to follow their way of choice. Cultural identity right seems to be part of self-determination rights. However, under international laws, people have right to traditional cultural practices that are unique and meaningful and have right to determine the way their culture may be developed .However, this right may be said to be limited as all states have a duty to protect and promote fundamental freedoms and human rights regardless of their social, political or economic systems. European framework convention drafters for national minorities protection suggests that cultural right purpose is to protect minorities aspirations in order to develop their culture and to preserve their identity that includes language, religion, cultural heritage and traditions. Troubling facts of cultural understanding in securing human rights respect which does not seem to be successful in exhibiting differences between minority and individual cultures have led to disagreement among professional and academics on understanding the purpose for which right we need and want. The cultural issue in relation to human rights is important because culture is said to be tied up within some formal legal systems. Human rights norms of cultural acceptance create a political and social environment that changes can be made into laws. This law changes can influence environment through government sanction signaling of the framework of international human rights that can help to contribute to cultural norms change. Cultural acceptance of laws that are said to be formal is important to effective human rights laws implementation because all actors that are related to this justice field that includes lawyers, judges, local administrators, police need to buy into this system for it to effectively work. (Day & Malleche, 2018).

The idea of the cultural right of indigenous people and minorities is gaining momentum more than other cultural rights such as cultural participation rights. However, another cultural notion and their human rights impact barrier or obstacle to international human rights enjoyment has been regarded to be largely secondary. The main attention that is paid to institutions of international rights regarding cultural rights reinforces a deep sentiment on cultural rights superfluity irrelevance. However, in an age of technological advancement and globalization and rapid flow of information, cultural differences tend to lose their importance. Human rights can help in the replacement of culture that is important to the social justice struggle and for human dignity furtherance .Human rights should be recognized as one of powerful mechanism that seeks to liberate humanity from poverty and in dispelling culture and society distrust internationally.

Culture can be regarded as a quality that is possessed by a person, with the impact that is serious to his or her ability to enjoy freedom and rights in the law of international human rights in an effective and meaningful way. This understanding helps to redirect attention to issues that have been marginalized for a long period. However, there ought to be a special attention that is induced to circumstances that are related to cultural differences that are between individuals and laws .This difference leads to alienation and human distancing from the disagreement and conflict with the legal systems and laws in force. (Almqvist, 2018) .United Nations points out that human rights concepts are bound closely to culture belief of it being central to identity which we belong to .The way individuals are born to die and to live is so much affected by culture to which they belong to. Similarly, individuals can benefit from experiences of other cultures. The Human Rights Universal Declaration suggests that every individual has the right to participate freely in the community's cultural life and through this implications, it means that there is no individual who has the right to direct, eradicate or dominate that culture.

Cultural rights are meant to secure a person from access to cultural practices that dominate public institution with authority to interpret, deliberate, and enforce human rights law. This is made possible through suitable cultural equipment acquisition. This acquisition is preconditioned for the cultural participation exercise rights and some other individual freedom and rights that are recognized in international laws of human rights. Cultural equipment that is suitable is essential to the enjoyment of human rights. However, Cultural focus directs attention to the importance of a set of tools or skills that are necessary for accessing legal institution and laws that help in participating in political and economic life. Most individuals consider legal ,economic and political participation as the main venues that are available in protecting and securing income and wealth fair share.

The current study distances itself from the right of culture interpretation to be motivated by concerns and interests that are community oriented. It instead advocates for an understanding that right as an individual freedom in ensuring that it doesn't cause any harm to an individual. Therefore there is a need for the human rights to focus on how civic freedom that includes freedom of thought, religion, and belief should be interpreted in order to accommodate the concerns of human rights.

Cultural Politicalisation risk is significant and real and it is experienced in a lot of multicultural societies. It is said to induce cultural sense as irrational and passionate and sometimes it poses to some disagreement and irresolvable conflicts in political life. This is brought by the fact that culture is not only based on practices but also on doctrines such as ethical, religious and philosophical that seeks to provide answers to eternal questions regarding human life. However, historical experiences suggest that there is the possibility of compromise, negotiation and doctrine adjustments for the sake of justice and peace when there is a diversity of the society.

Cultural relativism that is modern ought to come in different forms. Some cultural relativists argue that all ethical and beliefs systems are culturally relative and suggest that there are no moral universal ideals. However, Philosophers wrote a great deal on the relativism and human rights subject. Cultural relativism is a concept that can be said to be philosophic that places practice and value of a given society within itself. It caters to cultural differences where different culture has sets of standard that are different from" wrong or right". It has, therefore, become hard to judge which one is more superior than the other. Cultural relativity doctrine holds that different society has evolved attitudes that are unique to human, dignity, worth or rights concept . Cultural relativism is categorized into two doctrines ,strong and weak cultural relativism. Strong cultural relativism suggests culture as the validity source of moral rule and code. This assumes social practices ,norms , values and rights to be culturally determined but rights and human nature universality serve as relativism potential excesses check. Weak cultural relativism suggests that human rights are said to be prima facie universal it recognizes a culture as exceptions sources in human rights interpretation.

Cultural relativism is related to the human right issue. Whereas compared to cultural relativism that stresses more on diversity, human rights emphasize on universality. This means that there are some common moral principles. There also exists some controversy between human rights and cultural relativism example is on female genital mutilation in Africa which has continued to be in practice despite the efforts of WHO and UN to stop it. According to (Lenzerini , 2014). Cultural relativists suggest that there is no universally valid moral judgment. It is instead culturally relative. In human right translation, it is tantamount to assert that cultural traditions determine scope and existence of human rights that are enjoyed by people in a given society. There is no moral standards or transboundary legal that exists against practices of human rights that might be judged unacceptable or unacceptable. ("Vienna Declaration on Human Rights", 1993). Argues that there has been a controversy between relativists and universalists where cultural relativists who believe that human rights vary from one culture to the other. They maintain that a given activity that is perceived as a violation to human right by one country may be acceptable by another country under cultural belief prevalent. These controversy has created a gap that has led to the failure of efforts that seek to create a human rights protections that are uniform.

Human right Ideas originated from western political and philosophical thought. In human rights, whatever West may consider a universal norm may not be applicable to other cultures. Human rights are said to have developed from some inappropriate application of Western culture to other cultures. This Western human rights origin cannot and should not be applied universally. The discourse of modern human rights has its roots in western ideas. With this roots, it is evident that language in human rights discourse is specific to the West culturally. However, the discourse of human rights is not always framed in a way that every culture would be found acceptable. Current legal discourse and philosophical human rights argue that human rights are universal in part that justifies and in ensuring their universal application. As individuals share their humanness it is assumed that they must share their human rights. Therefore relativism that is strong does not make sense in the framework of human rights this is because they are supposed to be universal. Strong relativism has major implications for international laws and for cultures to engage in a constructive dialogue.

Female genital mutilation which has been termed as violation of human rights yet it continues to be practiced by part of Asian, African and Middle Eastern cultures. Women equality is an international proclaimed human right it prohibits gender distinctions but many cultures are continuing to deny them this right.Example Islamic cultures. However, this issues creates a controversy between human rights universality concepts and cultural relativi...

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