The Restitution of Cultural Property at the Heart of Cultural Diplomacy
(Obnovenie kultúrneho vlastníctva v srdci kultúrnej diplomacie)
Politické vedy, Volume 22, Number 2/2019, pages 78-97
Recommended form for quotation of the article / Odporúčaná forma citácie článku:
KOUHOSSOUNON, B. 2019. The Restitution of Cultural Property at the Heart of Cultural Diplomacy. In Politické vedy. [online]. Vol. 22, No. 2, 2019. ISSN 1335 – 2741, pp. 78-97. Available at: http://doi.org/10.24040/politickevedy.2019.22.2.78-97
Relations between France and West African countries are longstanding and are also evolving in the economic, political, security and even cultural fields. Various mutations and permanent stakes linked to the underdevelopment of states sometimes give rise to certain historical facts and the conduct of certain previously established cooperation between West African countries and Paris. As example, we can cite the restitution of the African cultural heritage by France. The specific case of Benin with this European country is the subject of our present approach. The results that will come from this study will allow the analysis of the behavior of the actors concerned, but they will also inform on the possible impacts in relation to the links of cooperation linking them. Such a theme is undoubtedly both sensitive and complex because, the prospects and the possible resolutions of the said problem will depend on the will and the action of the diplomacy of two States on a matter of interest. However, any approach that is meant to be original and scientific must be based on a variety of documentary sources. This is why, apart from our previous works, our present contribution will make use of the Savoy-Sarr report, correspondences, conventions, conference acts, journalistic and scientific articles. We also count on our fruitful talks in Paris at the Quai Branly-Jacques Chirac museum, at UNESCO and the Benin embassy. International law as well as information acquired from site visits and interviews with specialists in the cultural field and other resource persons with a precise knowledge of the problem are also considered.
Key words: Restitution, Cultural property, Benin, Colonization, Diplomacy