onsdag 19 april 2017

Protected memories - Language, Concepts and Ideology of Archaeological Heritage Governance

Dr. Johanna Enqvist (University of Helsinki) presents her PhD thesis work titled "Protected memories - Language, Concepts and Ideology of Archaeological Heritage Governance” (University of Helsinki, 2016) at the Research Seminar at the Department of ALM on Tuesday April 25, 2017 at 2-4 pm in room 3/0015, English Park Campus. The seminar language is English.

The abstract of Johanna's PhD thesis can be found below:

"The dissertation explores the key concepts of archaeological heritage management in Finland: their aspects, definitions and meanings, the history of the concepts and especially the contemporary, official discourse surrounding them  – the ways in which people represent, talk and write about  archaeological heritage  [arkeologinen perintö] and  ancient remains  [muinaisjäännös]. The social context of the study was focused on the Finnish archaeologists who worked in the intersecting fields of heritage management and academic archaeology. The texts, produced by the archaeologists, were analysed by means of critical discourse analysis; the findings of the analysis were compared to one of the most important contributions in the development of critical heritage studies: Laurajane Smith's (2005) theory of the authorized heritage discourse (AHD).

The study dissects the ideologies, identities and interaction which are constructed and maintained by the Finnish AHD. Consistent with Smith s arguments, the Finnish AHD appears as an ideological construction that is dominated by heritage officials and experts, and thus excludes other members of society from taking part in the processes that define heritage. The world view of the AHD represents reality as being divided into indisputable and naturalized conceptual categories, as well as into the quantitative results of measurements and numbers in the pursuit of scientific rigour. Archaeological heritage is defined and evaluated by the experts as material objects whose physical integrity, interpretation and representation of which archaeologists control.

The AHD is maintained in the network of official texts which concatenate and refer to each other. The vital intertextual element of these texts is derived from the Finnish Antiquities Act, prepared in the 1950s, which carries the connotations of nationalism and a juridical discourse. The social significance of heritage management, protection and research of archaeological heritage is thus reduced to obeying the law in the AHD.

The results and the conclusions of the study, concerning the historical contingency, causes, effects and action of the official heritage discourse, are vital in order to promote the more inclusive and participatory heritage practices in Finland in the future,  the democratised heritage discourse , which consists in the emancipatory interest of the research."

The thesis is written in Finnish and the full text can be found at https://helda.helsinki.fi/handle/10138/162811 More information about Dr. Enqvist can be found at https://tuhat.helsinki.fi/portal/sv/person/joenqvis 

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