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Author Wang, Yu, 1976-

Title Naturalizing ethnicity, culturalizing landscape : the politics of World Heritage in China
Published 2008


Location Call no. Vol. Availability
 W'PONDS  363.69095135 Wan/Nec  AVAILABLE
Description xii, 167 leaves ; 28 cm
Summary In the past ten years, more than twenty sites in China have been added to UNESCO's World Heritage List. This growing World-Heritage "fever" has manifestly transformed not only the lives of people living in these sites, but also the environments and ecosystems that these people both inhabit and constitute. Focusing on the tourism development, ethnicity construction, and landscape conservation on a potential World Cultural Heritage Site in Yunnan Province of China, my research investigates how the World Heritage system generates debates about heritage authenticity and creates new sites of struggle over control of cultural and natural resources in this rural, ethnic, and poverty-stricken site of Yunnan. My central research questions are: (1) How is "World Heritage" defined, through what discourses and priorities? (2) What is meant by "authenticity" in the discourse and practice of world heritage? And who has the right to determine how to preserve the presumed authenticity of a given people/site? (3) How are global concepts, such as heritage, authenticity, and conservation, understood and practiced on the local level? (4) Under the World-Heritage protection system, how are "nature" and "culture" received and constructed by different parties? Specifically, what influence does the natural environment exert on the imagination of the dominant ethnic minority, the Hani, living in the site? This is a project designed to interrogate networks of transnational actors and the circuits of power-knowledge production, by questioning who can really speak for "nature", "culture", "community," and finally "development." In a context where both global and state policies continue orchestrating developments in contemporary China, and where local struggles over identification and poverty increasingly haunt the policies, my dissertation seeks to contribute to a literature that has focused on the problems of development and conservation with a case that is centrally engaged with international and state-based modes of governmentality. This project aims above all to explore the multivalency and complexity of such concepts as "unity," "integrity," and "authenticity" central to the World Heritage protection system, and thus to create a broader dialogue among intellectuals and policy makers about how to make world heritage sites more manageable and their policies more effective
Notes Thesis (Ph.D.)--Duke University, 2008
Subject World Heritage areas -- China.
Cultural property -- China -- Yunnan Sheng.
Natural resources -- China -- Yunnan Sheng.
Author Duke University. Department of Cultural Anthropology.