Home Events Intellectual Property & Innovation Lunchtime Series - Cultural Appropriation and Semiotic Democracy: A Contrarian View - Tom Joo, Professor of Law, UC Davis

Intellectual Property & Innovation Lunchtime Series - Cultural Appropriation and Semiotic Democracy: A Contrarian View - Tom Joo, Professor of Law, UC Davis

The first of a new series of lunchtime discussions of new research on intellectual property, innovation, and cultural production co-sponsored by the Law School, the Center for Science and Innovation Studies, and the STS Program
When Sep 20, 2010
from 12:00 PM to 01:00 PM
Where King Hall 2064
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ABSTRACT:  North American intellectual property theorists tend to agree that while cultural production is concentrated in the media industry, the public actively participates in the production of meaning by "recoding" cultural properties-that is, by challenging their proffered meanings and assigning new ones.  Theorists writing in this vein further tend to agree that IP law tends to inhibit this appropriation of cultural properties and thus inhibits "semiotic democracy"- that is, broad participation in the making of cultural meanings.  Relying on examples from popular culture (primarily the history of hip-hop music), this paper will question the arguments that IP law regarding cultural appropriation inhibits semiotic democracy and that legal reforms facilitating cultural appropriation would promote semiotic democracy.  While the phenomenon of cultural appropriation may have positive effects on the diffusion of cultural participation and influence, it may simultaneously have other, negative effects.  And while the intellectual property regime may inhibit semiotic democracy in some ways, it may also further it-or simply be irrelevant to it.

Lunch will be provided but please RSVP Nina-Marie Bell nbell@ucdavis.edu by Friday (9/17) no later than noon to receive a copy of the paper and inform her of your menu choices.  Nina will be placing lunch orders accordin

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