Cultural diversity

News Releases / Speeches / Declarations

Pour une mobilisation immédiate en faveur d’une convention internationale sur la diversité culturelle par mmes monique gagnon-tremblay, vice-première ministre, ministre des relations internationales et ministre responsable de la francophonie et line beauchamp, ministre de la culture et des communications du québec

Paris, le 14 0ctobre 2003 – 2003/10/14

In this article published by French daily Le Figaro on October 14, 2003, Ms Gagnon-Tremblay and Ms Beauchamp express their hope that Québec culture, “both real and diverse,” will be further enriched through contact with other cultures while maintaining its own personality. They state that “reaching out to the world while remaining true to ourselves is the approach we defend in all forums where cultural diversity is discussed. We do it for ourselves, in the hope that the peoples of the world will join us because this initiative requires the support and encouragement of all those who wish to continue developing and sharing their culture.” Faced with “globalization conceived on a strictly economic basis” that could “harm the valuable mechanisms that many states, countries, and governments have developed to support cultural production,” Ms Gagnon-Tremblay and Ms Beauchamp explain that “the Government of Québec was one of the first to officially take up the cause for an international convention on cultural diversity.” This desire, reiterated by premier Jean Charest, was officially restated in a cabinet decision updating the Government of Québec’s position in favor of cultural diversity. Ms Gagnon-Tremblay and Ms Beauchamp do not view this as a rejection of globalization, but simply an effort to better meet the challenges of globalization and make it even more beneficial: “That’s why we want an international convention on cultural diversity that preserves our right to support our artists and cultural industries, in order to prevent the spread of a single world culture.” They believe that “each vote in favor of an international convention on cultural diversity is a big step toward what can already be called our cultural freedom.” For this reason, “adopting an international convention on cultural diversity, as UNESCO members are discussing at this very moment, deserves as much of our attention as ongoing trade negotiations.” (Available in French only)
Ministère de la Culture et des Communications