Intrinsic Value as a Reason for the Preservation of Minority Cultures

Albert W. Musschenga
June 1998
Ethical Theory & Moral Practice;Jun1998, Vol. 1 Issue 2, p201
Academic Journal
In the Netherlands, the policy of supporting the efforts of ethnic-cultural minorities to express and preserve their cultural distinctiveness, is nowadays considered as problematic because it might interfere with their integration into the wider society. The primary aim now is to reduce the unemployment rate of these groups and to stimulate their participation in the wider society. In this article I consider how the notion of the intrinsic value of cultures, if sensible, might affect the policy regarding ethnic-cultural minorities. I develop a theory of intrinsic value of culture, as an analogy of the theory of intrinsic value of non-human natural entities. My conclusion is that the dominant cultural group in the Netherlands should preserve clearly deviant minority cultures which have considerable intrinsic value.


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