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    Lindsay, Peter 2012. Can we own the past? Cultural artifacts as public goods. Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy, Vol. 15, Issue. 1, p. 1.

  • International Journal of Cultural Property, Volume 13, Issue 3
  • August 2006, pp. 259-283

History for Sale: The International Art Market and the Nation State

  • Venus Bivar (a1)
  • DOI:
  • Published online: 01 August 2006

In April of 2003 the collection of André Breton, one of the founders of Surrealism, was auctioned off at the Hôtel Druout in Paris. This article focuses on how the sale sparked a heated debate about the French state's role as the protector of French cultural patrimony and looks at the different interests involved, from Breton's daughter, who authorised the sale, to the Minister of Culture. Ultimately, the author argues that the state allowed the sale to occur, despite popular protest, in order to improve France's position in the global art market.

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International Journal of Cultural Property
  • ISSN: 0940-7391
  • EISSN: 1465-7317
  • URL: /core/journals/international-journal-of-cultural-property
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