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Describe the way our understanding of Heritage has shifted and become more diversified and contested. Discuss in relation to one of the following:

– Collective memory

– Popular culture

– Heritage policy

– Repatriation

– Dissonance

Background of Heritage Understanding

The monuments, different sights, and buildings are the traditional views of the heritage. Slowly, the society has proceeded towards the greater understanding of heritage, and today the society can recognize that heritage is both tangible and intangible, socially determined. The understandings and views of heritage shift, and it has also become more diversified. This is mostly noticed in respect to the dissonance. The interpretation of heritage is reflected as dissonant when there are different stories are stated by the different groups regarding a certain object. This is obvious for the multicultural nations to have diversified and contested views of heritage. Thus, this essay will discuss on understanding the way of heritage shift, how the shift has become more contested and diversified in respect to dissonance.

The heritage of the nation helps to bind the nation during the new and unsettled period, and this is seen in the public monuments, buildings, and in the statues, which has been valued for the achievement, identity and the superiority. In Australia, the museums are the public source to unite the country through the collections and the artifacts from all over the world. In the 20th century, the collecting of culture became the co-modification of the heritage and recognising the heritage as intangible (Alivizatou 2016). In the 1990s society, the society viewed heritage as the pure tangible one, today the heritage is recognised as both tangible and intangible. Although the struggle of adopting the new defined, views of heritage remain a strange concept to the acute believer of traditional views of heritage (Severo and Venturini 2016). The heritage is defined as the fluid and socially determined and not being remarkable become aloof for the strong believer of traditional views of heritage. The society was not ready to accept the explanation of the intangible heritage whereas they place more importance on the old views of the heritage. Intangible Cultural Heritage (2003) was a stage away from the old heritage views, but it still focuses on the significance on the exceptionality and also states that the heritage, which is intangible, is fixed than the fluid and ever-changing (Lixinski 2013).  In today’s world, the people are facing cultural dissonance and adhering to their identities for the increasing similarities; consequently, there is the increase of the collective memories. This makes the heritage contested and expanded in respect to dissonance, because of the exclusivity of the national identities (Mortara 2014).

The cultural dissonance began in Canada and then moved to Australia and other countries, this term was used to manage the issues existed because of a large number of varied ethnic cultures in a single nation. The heritage is diversified and contested by the dissonance; it is so because various people contested with the national identity and the collective memories. (Mortara 2014). The government acknowledged this dissonance in the nation and also recognized the failure of the incorporated policies and understands the positive effects of the cultural diversity (Ho 2013). For this, the various groups should consider their existence in the nation as well as the nation with them, and in the absence of this mutual understandings, this will create a discordant nation. The cultural dissonance is the sense of disharmony or the confusions, which are experienced by various people in the society, because of the changes in the cultural environment and that is because of multiculturalism the cultural dissonance occurs in the society. For example, Britain experienced a breakdown of their multiculturalism in the Stephen Lawrence case where it has been found out that the state failed to carry out the acute investigation against the violent racial crime. The multicultural culture is contested, and the governments struggled to maintain the multiculturalism in the nation where there will be plenty of various cultural values (Winter 2015). The national identities and the collective memories are being developed to overcome the problems of controlling the multicultural nation. The collective memories are constructed for belonging to the majority excluding the minorities. Thus, it can be said that the heritage is diverse and contested in the multicultural nation because of how the national identities are consumed and constructed.

Dissonance and its Impact on the Society

The heritage is used by the nation for constructing the collective memories that are by selecting the achievements in the history for writing the national story and this story mainly ignores the negative part, the bad and the ugly parts and also silences that part of the history, which could be another minority’s heritage (Butler, Khoo-Lattimore and Mura 2014).  There are institutions, which beliefs and hold the stories, puts investment in their truth and this makes it difficult to shift or reverse the national story and this story rationalize the particular way to maintain the national identity. This traditional belief provided a shape of the heritage produced and consumed and who are the ones who will be getting part of it and who will be not. This can be found out that the multiculturalism has been shifted and changed the understandings of the traditional views of heritage by making it more diversified as well as contested, by the elimination of the minority group’s national identities and the collective memories and this has also been found out in Britain (Ashworth and Larkbam 2013). This has been found out by the researches that there has been huge failure involving the multiculturalism in the national story, this is so because the nation is so rooted in the traditional views of the heritage. The traditional views have been shifted towards the modern views of the dissonant heritage and especially in the multicultural nation where the government also understands the importance of the dissonant heritage in the nation (Loch 2014).

The involvement of the community residents has always been the best practice for the sustainability although the problems regarding the dissonant heritage can arise. The issues of the dissonance can be connected with the interpretations of the past and more specifically in the context of promoting the heritage places, those are linked and connected with the ideologies on the contrary of the principles mentioned in the Universal Declaration of human rights. The dissonant heritage conflicts and disharmonies, which mainly occurs for the relationship of the contemporary users and its past. The development of the dissonant heritage along with the heritage phenomenon, the roots of the heritage in the fundamental process for the recognition, and marketing. The powerful association with the social, cultural and the political aspects of the human diversity that rises the questions like whose heritage and others and this causes effects on the views of the dissonant heritage (Rodzi, Zaki and Subli 2013).

The dissonant heritage is always diversified and also contested, and there will never be any universal truth. This multicultural heritage allows the nation to be benefited as the multicultural heritage will bring prosperity to the nation (Labadi 2013). The traditional views of heritage rely on the single national story which cannot be diversified and contested and will follow a single culture in the nation. The conflicts of the traditional views versus the modern views of the heritage cause how the multiculturalism became the production site for the national identity. This excludes the minorities of the heritage and also how in contrast to that the minorities have developed rise on their voice against this elimination and it has been seen in Britain as mentioned above (Winter 2015).  This can be said that the heritage previously understood as the simple buildings, monuments and the sights. Now heritage is the complex, fluid, social and ever-changing and it is also contested and diversified in respects to the multiculturalism and possibly in the further process also this will be continued. The cultural diversity in the multicultural nation is respected and valued by the modern views of the heritage. The government convinced the different decision maker and the stakeholders regarding the importance of investing in the multiculturalism development. This will create an important dimension of intercultural-dialogue, as it can precede the approaches towards the sustainable development and will also help in exercising the universal recognition of the human rights and freedoms. This can serve to strengthen and develop the democratic governance and the social coherence (Bakhov 2013).

Therefore, from the above discussion, it can be concluded that there has been a change in the society and also in the views of the society. The traditional views of the society were the importance of the heritage based on the national identity and the heritage of the single culture nation, whereas the modern views of heritage state that the heritage can be modified and in the multicultural nation, the multicultural heritage should be valued. The government understands the importance of the multicultural value in society. The society in the multicultural nation causes the diversity and contest regarding the heritage. The shift from the old traditional views of heritage towards the modern views of the heritage that is towards the dissonant heritage in the multicultural nation. This has been valued and respected by the government, and the government understands the importance of the dissonant heritage in the nation.

References

Alivizatou, M., 2016. Intangible heritage and the museum: New perspectives on cultural preservation. Routledge.

Ashworth, G.J. and Larkbam, P.J., 2013. A heritage for Europe. Building A New Heritage (RLE Tourism), p.1.

Bakhov, I.S., 2013. Government Multicultural Policy in Canada in the Period of 1970–2000-s. Middle-East Journal of Scientific Research, 15(10), pp.1450-1454.

Butler, G., Khoo-Lattimore, C. and Mura, P., 2014. Heritage tourism in Malaysia: Fostering a collective national identity in an ethnically diverse country. Asia Pacific Journal of Tourism Research, 19(2), pp.199-218.

Ho, C., 2013. From social justice to social cohesion: a history of Australian multicultural policy. 'For those who've come across the seas': Australian multicultural theory, policy and practice.

Labadi, S., 2013. UNESCO, cultural heritage, and outstanding universal value: Value-based analyses of the World Heritage and Intangible Cultural Heritage Conventions. Rowman & Littlefield.

Lixinski, L., 2013. Intangible cultural heritage in international law. OUP Oxford.

Loch, D., 2014. Integration as a sociological concept and national model for immigrants: scope and limits. Identities, 21(6), pp.623-632.

Mortara, M., Catalano, C.E., Bellotti, F., Fiucci, G., Houry-Panchetti, M. and Petridis, P., 2014. Learning cultural heritage by serious games. Journal of Cultural Heritage, 15(3), pp.318-325.

Rodzi, N.I.M., Zaki, S.A. and Subli, S.M.H.S., 2013. Between tourism and intangible cultural heritage. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences, 85, pp.411-420.

Severo, M. and Venturini, T., 2016. Intangible cultural heritage webs: Comparing national networks with digital methods. New Media & Society, 18(8), pp.1616-1635.

Winter, E., 2015. Rethinking Multiculturalism After its “Retreat” Lessons From Canada. American Behavioral Scientist, 59(6), pp.637-657.

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