Heritage Dynamics: Politics of Authentication and Aesthetics of Persuasion in Brazil, Ghana, South Africa and the Netherlands
Coordinators: Prof.dr. Birgit Meyer (VU), Dr. Mattijs van de Port (ASSR), Prof.dr. Herman Roodenburg (Meertens Instituut), Dr. Marleen Witte (VU)
Research participants:Â 3 PhD positions financed by NWO: Markus Balkenhol (Meertens Instituut, Amsterdam), Duane Jethro (South Africa), Maria Paula Adinolfi (Brazil)
This multidisciplinary, international, comparative program focuses on (a) the framing of cultural heritage in multicultural arenas, (b) its intersection with citizenship and identity, (c) attempts to designcultural heritage in such a way that it appear as â€˜authenticâ€™ and â€˜realâ€™ (politics of authentication) and (d) the extent to which cultural heritage is â€“ or is not – subjectively experienced as objectively real (aesthetics of persuasion) in Brazil, Ghana, South Africa and the Netherlands. Combining (1) a thorough analysis of the processes by which canons-in-the-making are re-mediated with (2) an in-depth empirical study of how cultural heritage becomes inscribed into understandings of self through embodied performances, this project seeks (3) to develop a comparative framework, and (4) to move cultural analysis beyond the trodden paths of constructivist and essentializing approaches.