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Circles of Consensus: The Preservation of Cultural Diversity through Political Processes

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Author(s): Jordi Jaria i Manzano

Journal: Utrecht Law Review
ISSN 1871-515X

Volume: 8;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 92;
Date: 2012;
Original page

Keywords: cultural diversity | federalism | democracy

ABSTRACT
Western modern culture has expanded at the universal level and has thereby become a threat to other cultures, particularly those of chthonic communities. But these cultures have progressively recognized its worth as a source of richness, which can be very useful in facing future challenges to humanity. Moreover, in terms of human dignity and the equality of all human beings, Western modern culture has to be recognized as having an intrinsic value as well. Given these facts, we must find a way to protect this cultural diversity in an effective manner. It is obvious that assimilationist or isolationist models are not satisfactory. So I propose a third way. I call it an integrationist or a deep approach. It consists of giving political density to cultural diversity through the design of federalist strategies that have, as a result, the definition of different levels of decision (circles of consensus). After having exposed my model, I will pay attention to the recent constitutional experiences in Ecuador and Bolivia, where some new developments in this sense are intended. I compare these models with my proposal and, finally, I analyze the main problems that a deep approach to preserving cultural diversity has to face up to.

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