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39 Cardozo Arts & Ent. L.J. 557 (2021)


This Article explores the role that heritage has on our understanding of the appropriateness of intellectual property protection for fashion designs in light of Christopher Sprigman and Kal Raustiala’s seminal work in The Piracy Paradox. At times, heritage seems to both reinforce Sprigman and Raustiala’s argument that fashion thrives in a low-IP regime and, at other times, heritage challenges that argument. Taking Italian fashion design as a case study, this Article considers the intersection of brand heritage, cultural heritage, and intellectual property law and makes three central observations. First, that fashion designs reflecting brand heritage thrive in a low-IP regime. Second, that fashion designs might only benefit from a higher-IP regime in instances where we understand fashion designs not as brand heritage alone, but as part of a wider cultural heritage. Finally, understanding the relationship between copyright law and cultural heritage law is central to exploring how a higher-IP regime might benefit fashion designs today.



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