Representing national culture is embedded within our museum and heritage practice. Yet, what underpins ‘nation’ or ‘culture’ is often occluded in interpretation and other representational practices associated with visitor engagement and tourism. Yet feeling cultural connections at or in heritage spaces keeps them viable and relevant.
This book conceptualises heritage in ways that cannot be encompassed through re-envisioning or ‘new representational practices’, but that need to be considered through embodied experience, encounters and accounts of feelings, affective and non-hegemonic collective senses of heritage values. The book represents a moment of political challenge, arguing for an account of heritage studies that enables both political inclusion for visitors and inclusion for those communities previously ‘edited out’ of the narratives. This book emphasises the political value of affective accounts of heritage, and the performative experience of heritage, to recast the representational practices that have ossified at the heart of heritage. Using research from Australasia and Europe, the question of affective power, value and grammars is considered from a much broader perspective than the framing of heritage in its conventional form.
Divya Tolia-Kelly is a Reader in Geography at Durham University.
Emma Waterton is an Associate Professor and DECRA Fellow based at the University of Western Sydney in the Institute for Culture and Society.
Steve Watson is Professor in the Business School at York St John University, UK.