Beyond the Property Paradigm
Fragments for an Anarchist Approach to Archaeological Heritage
Popular, legal, and academic relationships to archaeology are founded upon a property-based model of heritage which threatens to produce unsustainable consequences for heritage sites and stakeholders. The interrelations between the material culture of heritage, the scientific practice of archaeology, and the political economies of tourism and education are explored here in order to analyze the consequences of heritage development. In contrast to a property model of heritage, an ‘anarchistic’ model is proposed for handling heritage. Such a model implies that no individual or collectivity can own archaeological sites, information about those sites, or the material resources generated by tourism or research at heritage sites. Finally, sincere questions are raised about the ethics of intellectual property, heritage management, and the tourism and academic industries within both traditional and ‘anarchist’ models live.
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