In this salon Rodney Harrison presents alternative and provocative ways of thinking about heritage.
Time implies processes of decay, destruction and forgetting. Heritage is often thought to be the preservation of old objects, places and practices that are valuable and at risk, yet we can also think of it as a series of practices situated in present society, engaging with the past to build a common future.
How does uncertainty about the deep future and the transformation of values affect heritage practice? How do institutions and people decide what to discard and what to keep in times of mass production and consumption? How is diversity preserved – or produced – in the domains of biology, culture, genetics and language, and what happens if these domains interact? How might we work with, rather than against, processes of decay and ruination in heritage conservation?
19:30: Welcome by Jean Paul Van Bendegem/VUB
19:35: Lecture by Rodney Harrison: The Futures of Heritage
20:00: Short response + presentation by Lionel Devlieger/Rotor
20:15: Short response by Anna Rispoli/artist
20:30: Discussion with the invited speakers on heritage as a series of activities which are intimately concerned with assembling future worlds, on the stakes of relating heritage practices with each other and with contemporary societal concerns.
Rodney Harrison is Professor of Heritage Studies at the UCL Institute of Archaeology, University College London, and Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC)
Heritage Priority Area Leadership Fellow. His work engages the material pasts, presents and futures of archaeology, anthropology, heritage and museums. He is the founding editor and editor-in-chief of the Journal of Contemporary Archaeology, a founding executive committee member of the Association of Critical Heritage Studies, and principal investigator on the c.£2.4million AHRC funded Heritage Futures research programme. This research programme is distinctive in its comparative approach, which aims to bring heritage conservation practices of various forms into closer dialogue with the management of other material and virtual legacies such as nuclear waste, and in its exploration of different forms of heritage as discrete future-making practices. He is the (co-)author or (co-)editor of more than a dozen books and edited volumes and over 60 refereed journal articles and book chapters on a range of topics, with particular foci on archaeologies of the present and recent past, historical archaeologies of colonialism, critical heritage studies and the histories of museums, archaeology and anthropology. His books include Collecting, Ordering, Governing: Anthropology, Museums and Liberal Government (written with Tony Bennett, Fiona Cameron, Ben Dibley, Ira Jacknis and Conal McCarthy, Duke, 2017), Heritage: Critical Approaches (Routledge, 2013), The Oxford Handbook of the Archaeology of the Contemporary World (edited with Paul Graves-Brown and Angela Piccini, OUP, 2013), and After Modernity: Archaeological Approaches to the Contemporary Past (written with John Schofield, OUP, 2010).
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