Posts Tagged ‘world heritage’

Our World Heritage

Wednesday, June 16th, 2021

Cornelius Holtorf presented in two sessions dedicated to New Heritage Approaches, arranged in the context of the global campaign Our World Heritage.

On 14 June 2021, he presented and discussed the question “Which heritage will benefit future generations?” in a session on Modern, contemporary and future heritage, attended by a global audience of more than 40.

On 16 June 2021, he presented and discussed “Cultural Heritage Strengthening Human Resilience” in a session on Heritage Sustainability, Resilience and the Agenda 2030. The session formed concurrently part of the 6th Heritage Forum of Central Europe. 

The Bamiyan Buddhas – what next?

Friday, December 11th, 2020

In 2001, the Taliban blew the Bamiyan Buddha statues to pieces. Since then, UNESCO and others have been deliberating whether they ought to be reconstructed.

Now the current state of the discussion has been published by Springer in a volume entitled The Future of the Bamiyan Buddha Statues, summarising the outcomes of a UNESCO conference held in Tokyo in 2017. The book contains a chapter by Cornelius Holtorf entitled “Destruction and Reconstruction of Cultural Heritage as Future-Making“. He argues that before any specific reconstructions of the Buddha statues are commissioned, we should consider several alternative futures for the past:

  • will there be new audiences for heritage among the growing populations of Asia?
  • Will digital and interactive ways of presentation reduce the significance of genuine artefacts?
  • Will the preference for dark and painful heritage grow and perhaps increasingly demand stories about the Taliban rather than about Buddhism?
  • Or will heritage tourism come to an end altogether? 

Re-imagining heritage

Friday, November 20th, 2020

Cornelius Holtorf presented a lecture on “Heritage Futures and Re-Imagining Heritage” for an audience of 70 attending the Research Forum at the Department of Archaeology, University of York, UK.

Using the example of UNESCO World Heritage and global conflicts during the 20th and 21st centuries, he argued that addressing ‘heritage futures’ means to be able to re-imagine heritage – not the least to create peace or other benefits for future generations.

World heritage futures in Karlskrona

Thursday, November 5th, 2020

Cornelius Holtorf held a full-day World Heritage Workshop in Karlskrona. Joining up with the Director of the Museum of Blekinge region, two Heads of Department and two education professionals, they discussed in detail development prospects and possibilities for a planned World Heritage Museum and its many associated activities in the light of global trends in the cultural heritage sector.

From left to right: Ola Palmgren (pedagogue), Christoffer Sandahl (Head of Collections), Maja Heuer (Head of Public Unit), Marcus Sandekjer (Director), Cornelius Holtorf, Charlotte Nordheim (Project coordinator and pedagogue). The two old guys in the background remained silent during the day.

Prefiguration and World Heritage

Tuesday, August 18th, 2020

Now published in free open access:

Forum Kritische Archäologie Vol. 9, 2020
Streitraum: Heritage Futures

  • Cornelius Holtorf
    Heritage Futures, Prefiguration and World Heritage
  • Trinidad Rico
    Heritage Time, the Next Zeitgeist. A Response to Cornelius Holtorf’s “Heritage Futures, Prefiguration and World Heritage”
  • Hilmar Schäfer
    The Consecration of World Heritage Sites – Practice and Critique
  • Lewis Borck
    Seeds to Trees: Connecting the Means and Ends in Heritage Management. A Reply to Holtorf

Memory Portals

Monday, August 3rd, 2020

Our evocative visualisations of Öland 2050 are now part of the digital exhibition “Memory Portals” (13 July-1 November 2020). Click on the image to enter!

An Archaeology for the Future

Sunday, May 31st, 2020

Archaeology is the study of the past in the present. But can it deal with the future too?

  • Which future(s) are archaeologists working for?
  • Which archaeological heritage will benefit future generations most?
  • How can archaeologists build capacity in futures thinking? 

Some thoughts on these issues have now been published by Cornelius Holtorf in Post-Classical Archaeologies vol 10. By reviewing some recent and current projects conducted at Linnaeus University in Sweden he shows that it is possible to engage actively and constructively with the future and consider benefits of archaeology for future societies.

Do we need a new world heritage?

Monday, May 25th, 2020

A contribution by Cornelius Holtorf and Annalisa Bolin for the blog Seeing the Woods of the Rachel Carson Centre has now been published, entitled

CORONA CRISIS, UNESCO AND THE FUTURE: DO WE NEED A NEW WORLD HERITAGE?

We argue that it is not surprising that many have started asking about the legacy that the “corona crisis” of 2020 is going to leave behind for the years and perhaps for decades to come. Seldom have the relations between present and future societies felt more relevant than during the present weeks…

 

The Future of the World (and Heritage)

Monday, May 18th, 2020

In a very insightful work, Jenny Andersson addressed the history of The Future of the World (2018), discussing Futurology, Futurists and The Struggle for the Post-Cold War Imagination.

It emerges that from the mid 1960s to the mid 1970s, future research was a frontier of the social sciences. According to Andersson, this was the heyday of the  ‘long term’ as a category of control and management. It was also the time of the 1964 Venice Charter and the 1972 World Heritage Convention, when heritage began to be managed for the long term. But then something happened:

Against a post-war notion of the future as the ‘long term’ stood a distinctly different idea of the future as a field of resistance, love, and imagination. According to the latter, the future was not a logical and foreseeable construct, but a domain of active human consciousness, transcendence, and being. As future studies somehow married futurology by the mid-1970s on and the different strands of future research came together in a dominant idea of expertise, it was this radical content that was lost. (original context)

Arguably, in the realm of heritage, this alternative future now lost was connected to stories about a heritage associated with early matriarchy, the Celtic druids and native ancestral wisdom.

Are these strands of heritage on the way back, now that climate change and other crises put the need for an alternative future back on the agenda? Do we still need World Heritage in the ‘long term’?

From Corona Crisis to Heritage Futures

Tuesday, April 14th, 2020

A virus has put the world on hold. Many individual human actions suddenly appear extremely small and insignificant in comparison with the unyielding might and relentless spread with which the SARS-CoV-2 virus is presently conquering Earth.

It is not surprising that many have started asking about the legacy that the ‘corona crisis’ of 2020 is going to leave behind for the years and perhaps for decades to come. Seldom have the relations between present and future societies felt more relevant than during the present weeks.

Read a commentary on the “corona crisis” from the UNESCO Chair on Heritage Futures. — Do we need a new kind of world heritage for the post-corona world?