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Cultural Products and the World Trade Organization

$82.00 (C)

Part of Cambridge Studies in International and Comparative Law

  • Date Published: February 2011
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521184052

$ 82.00 (C)

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About the Authors
  • Debate about trade and culture has a long history, but the application of WTO rules to cultural products such as films, radio, and books remains one of the most divisive issues in the organization. After assessing the economic and social arguments for treating cultural products differently from things like steel or wheat, this 2007 book explains how the vastly different views of WTO members in earlier negotiations led to an outcome that is disappointing for all. It goes on to provide a comprehensive evaluation of possible solutions, including evolution of the law through WTO dispute settlement, an agreement outside the WTO, and reforms to improve the balance between trade liberalization and cultural policy objectives.

    • Partly interdisciplinary: examines economic, social and cultural reasons for WTO Members' different viewpoints, while providing a clear legal framework
    • Balance between practice and theory: includes discussion of role of international law in WTO disputes while taking into account political ramifications
    • Considers both sides: not biased in favour of trade or culture and presents solution that should be acceptable to both sides: explains reasons for different countries' arguments
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    Reviews & endorsements

    "Books about trade-and-culture often promote one of the aspects, either the trade or the culture side. However, Voon avoids preferring one side of the debate and instead provides a balanced and thoughtful view of the highly complex issues surrounding the challenge of protecting and promoting culture and cultural diversity, while at the same time pursuing the goal of further trade liberalisation among Member States. Ultimately, the greatest merit of the very comprehensive and insightful book is that it proposes a clear solution to the stalemate in the trade-and-culture debate."
    --Franziska Sucker, Research Fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Heidelberg, Germany

    "...the first, and so far the only, book-length publication in English on the WTO and cultural products....This book is not biased in favor of trade or culture. Voon presents some solutions that should be acceptable to both sides, citing international trade treaties and other materials extensively, while explaining the reasons for different countries' arguments....A discussion of a highly specialized topic..."
    --Yuxin Li, Law Library Journal

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    Product details

    • Date Published: February 2011
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521184052
    • length: 344 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 18 mm
    • weight: 0.46kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. Stalemate and its Ideological Origins:
    1. Trade and culture
    2. A case study of cultural products: protectionism vs cultural policy
    3. What's wrong with the current treatment of cultural products?
    Part II. Options for the Future:
    4. Resolution through dispute settlement and international law
    5. Constructing a new agreement outside the WTO
    6. Improving the existing WTO agreements
    7. Conclusion.

  • Author

    Tania Voon, University of Melbourne

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