Revista de l'Alguer, Vol. 10, Núm. 10 (1999)

Quan el bosc no ens deixa veure els arbres: Cultures, individus i drets humans

Josep Martí i Pérez

Resum


The central argument of the article is that we ought nat to fall into the error of attributing too much importance to "culture", so that this doesn't let us see the individual. The concept of "culture" not only represents a category with supposed ana lytical value for social and humanistic sciences but also has a wide social relevance. Nevertheless, the manner in wich this concept is ge nerally used implies a standa rdized wiew of the social system and a certain determinism; at the same time, culture is also sometimes given a great importance over and above its bearers, the individuals. This is important from the epistemological paint of view regarding antropology, as well from the practicaI one regarding all those saciaTdiscurses in wich the idea of culture has a certain relevance. This is clear to see, for instance , in the criticism carried out by the extreme cultura l relativism against the universalist philosophy of human rights. The article pon ts out the need to think in terms of "cultural frameworks" in order to play down the ethnocratic and deterministic character of culture. In this mariner, anthropology may move closer toward an approach centered on the individual.

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