Download e-book for iPad: Intangible Heritage and the Museum: New Perspectives on by Marilena Alivizatou

By Marilena Alivizatou

During this comparative, overseas examine Marilena Alivizatou investigates the connection among museums and the recent thought of “intangible heritage.” She charts the increase of intangible history in the international sphere of UN cultural coverage and explores its implications either by way of foreign politics and in regards to museological perform and demanding concept. utilizing a grounded ethnographic method, Alivizatou examines intangible background within the neighborhood complexities of museum and historical past paintings in Oceania, the Americas and Europe. This multi-sited, cross-cultural method highlights key demanding situations presently confronted through cultural associations around the globe in realizing and featuring this kind of background.

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These principles relate to erasure, renewal, and impermanence, which ultimately are a “resistance to conservation and commodification” (2000:15–16). Bharucha offers two examples of “pre-modern” performances that rely on ideas of erasure, renewal, and impermanence. Kolam are ­traditional floor drawings/prayers made by women in South India, and their “entire point lies in the erasure of the floor-drawing after it has been completed, following hours of meticulous work” (2000:16). Similarly, he describes the traditional clay modelling of Hindu deities Durga, Kali, and Lakshmi during the Pujas in Calcutta.

For many critics, international and national | 42 Chapter 2 governmental programmes like archives, lists, databases, and ­inventories are “oddly reminiscent of early anthropology, which was driven by the conviction that primitive cultures should be documented in their entirety—from basketry techniques and healing arts to kinship systems and religious beliefs—because their extinction was inevitable” (Brown 2005:48). Although today (and in the context of cultural revival further discussed in chapters 3, 4, and 5) those early anthropological collections are proving to be of great value to the descendants of the peoples studied (see Abil in Speiser 1996[1923]; Herle 2003; Lenz 2004), the methods and techniques employed then and now reveal a tendency towards the objectification, segmentation, and eventual simplification of cultures and ways of life.

The addition of “cultural landscapes” in 1992 as a new category to the Convention further expanded the scope of world heritage (Cleere 1995). ” But the universalism of the world heritage approach on the one hand and the relativism of approaches to authenticity on the other point to the problematic nature of this concept (Titchen 1996). Through its heritage programmes UNESCO has tried to strike a balance between universalism and relativism. However, reconciling a universal ethos with the particularities of different constituencies is often fraught with controversy (Hylland-Eriksen 2003).

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