Ely, Jr. Professor of Humanities and Sciences in the Department of Anth From she is A. She is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities. Over the past twenty years she has been awarded grants and fellowships including those from the Andrew W.
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Lynn Meskell. That limitation aside, however, throughout the volume Meskell charts the intertwined histories of heritage and UNESCO in a way that is, to my knowledge, unparalleled in its depth. The initial two of these chapters are the most straightforwardly historical, while the rest combine history and anthropological reflection. The rest of the book details the outcomes of that process in some detail. As anyone even vaguely familiar with the often dubious processes of inscribing world heritage should agree, such an outcome would indeed be preferential to the ethical morass that such acts of inscription currently constitute.
My one quibble with the volume stems from the issue which Meskell confronts at the start: the book is very much written from the perspective of someone whose background is in archaeology. Doubtless other readers will disagree, but occasionally I wondered if the case made for archaeology throughout the volume was always merited. Archaeology is a changed or changing discipline, there is no doubt.
Witness the flood of funding for archaeological training in non-Western countries: who is being trained, and why? Current conversations about decolonization only go to emphasize such questions: all too often archaeological work can be criticized for perpetuating asymmetrical power relations. UNESCO needs to get its heritage work in order, but it is far from being the only institution in that position. Share this:.
A Future in Ruins