Detailed information about the course

[ Back ]

Interrogating heritage and creativity


5-6 November 2021


Peter Bille Larsen, UNIGE - UZH

Florence Graezer Bideau, EPFL


Prof. Michael Herzfeld, Harvard University

Dr. Peter Bille Larsen, UNIGE - UZH

Dr. Florence Graezer Bideau, EPFL


This module aims to introduce contemporary debates around heritage and creativity. Descriptions of heritage, guidance and norms rarely denote the central role that innovation and creativity play across a wide range of different forms and types of heritage.

From special sites and monuments to everyday cultural practices, emphasis in narrative terms tends to focus on connections to the past, the nation and essentialized traditions rehearsing long-standing dichotomies between authentic heritage and change. Many times, creativity, innovation and the ensuing transformations of both rural and urban spaces tend to remain hidden behind exposed artefacts and official representations, silenced by authorized heritage discourse or simply relegated as vernacular practices. Similarly, representations of cultural or ritual practices are often reified, essentialized and even commodified. Ranging from massive infrastructure construction, speculative architecture and total material transformations of heritage sites to micro-level restoration and beautification techniques by local craftsmen, creativity and innovation clearly take different forms, values and positionalities in the context of heritage. Furthermore, creativity is often at the heart of intangible cultural heritage such as adapting cultural practices potentially innovating in terms of both form and meaning over time.

Targeting an interdisciplinary audience amongst others PhD students from anthropology, urban studies, architecture, and digital humanities, the PhD workshop also aims to build an interdisciplinary community and strengthen linkages between students working on heritage and creativity





Deadline for registration 15.09.2021
short-url short URL

short-url URL onepage