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Report on the contribution of cultural initiatives to creating and developing right-respecting societies

4 January 2018
Special Rapporteur in the field of cultural rights
To the Human Rights Council at its 37th session (Feb-March 2018)


Bombing of poems over London, 28 August 2010. © Photo collective Los Casagrande, Chile

In her third report to the Human Rights Council (A/HRC/37/55), the Special Rapporteur addresses how actions in the field of arts and culture can make significant contributions towards creating, developing and maintaining societies in which all human rights are increasingly realized.

By engaging people and encouraging their interaction through artistic and cultural expression, actions in the field of culture can open a space for individuals and groups to:

  • reflect upon their society
  • confront and modify their perception of one another
  • express their fears and grievances in a non-violent manner
  • develop resilience after violent or traumatic experiences, including human rights violations
  • imagine the future they want for themselves, and
  • and how to better realize human rights in their society.

Through these initiatives, people can increase social interactions necessary for mutual understanding and built or rebuilt trust. This is essential to achieving a range of human rights goals and to respecting cultural diversity.

Learn more about the rights related to artistic freedom and creativity.


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Alexandra Xanthaki, Special Rapporteur in the field of cultural rights
CH-1211 Geneva 10
Telephone: +41 22 917 96 30
Fax: +41 22 917 90 06

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