On Cultural Appropriation

I was reminded recently of the silly notion called cultural appropriation. It’s silly for two reasons: 1) every culture on Earth is a result of the mixing of previous cultures, and 2) cultural practices are ideas, and ideas cannot be owned. These are also the same reasons why “intellectual property” is a silly notion: 1) every idea on Earth is a remix of previous ideas, and 2) ideas cannot be owned. Accepting intellectual property means you must accept the lamentations against cultural appropriation, and vice versa, for they are the very same silly thing. Fortunately for me I don’t accept intellectual property and I don’t lament cultural appropriation. In fact I practice and celebrate the appropriation of ideas from other people and other cultures shamelessly. And that’s today’s two cents.

Save as PDFPrint

Written by 

Founder and editor of Everything-Voluntary.com and UnschoolingDads.com, Skyler is a husband and unschooling father of three beautiful children. His writings include the column series “One Voluntaryist’s Perspective” and “One Improved Unit,” and blog series “Two Cents“. Skyler also wrote the books No Hitting! and Toward a Free Society, and edited the books Everything Voluntary and Unschooling Dads. You can hear Skyler chatting away on his podcasts, Everything Voluntary and Thinking & Doing.

Notify of

Most Voted
Newest Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Alex Knight
Alex Knight
1 year ago

Must I, again? Really? 😀


PS: You do seem to be hyper-obsessed with this issue and others surrounding it, for whatever reason.

I think connecting “cultural appropriation” and IP is quite a tenuous stretch, but whatever.