Public Trust In Stewardship And Public Service

1401 words - 6 pages


Public trust is expressed and given meaning in the administration and delivery of preservation and interpretations activities. Public trust refers to stewardship and public service. It ensure that heritage will be able to be passed on to future generations. This essay will examine how preservation and interpretation of both tangible and intangible heritage build public trust in museums, archives and historic places. It will examine preservation, administration and visitor policies that encourage and maintain public trust.
Before discussing public trust, this essay will define key terms used in the subsequent discussion: conservation, preservation, tangible heritage and intangible heritage. Conservation refers to the "act of safeguarding an protecting heritage resources" (Study Guide: HERM301, 2013, 10) Preservation refers to the specific actions done to achieve conservation (Study Guide: HERM301, 2013, 10). Tangible heritage refers to art, archives, buildings, archaeological data, artifacts, landscapes and environments that have historical and cultural value(Study Guide: Herm301, 2013, 6). Intangible heritage refers to cultural traditions, practices and languages. It may include music, dance, stories, feelings and life ways of the culture (Study Guide: Herm301, 2013, 6). It also refers to the manner in which the culture may treat their tangible heritage for example the practices surrounding the artifacts, such as menstrual taboos and proximity to other artifacts. It is important that all heritage management institutions work to conserve and preserve both tangible and intangible heritage.
Preservation is a responsibility of heritage management (Rypkema, 2006, 36). By preserving tangible and intangible cultural heritage and providing public access, it gives it meaning (Lewis, 2004, 15). By the same token museums do not own collections but act as stewards to take care of, protect and preserve heritage (Rypkema, 2006, 36). Preservation of historic buildings and its original setting can give the structure even more meaning (Lewis, 2004, 7). This is because the historic building, tangible heritage, and its cultural setting (intangible heritage) work together to recreate the context of the events that occurred in the past.
The conservation of heritage sites makes cities viable and equitable (Rypkema, 2006, 36). The conservation of heritage sites also is a lot more environmentally conscious than demolition. The demolition of heritage sites is a waste of materials and a vast consumption of energy when the conservation alternative reduces maintenance expenses and construction costs. According to Rypkema, repairing historic windows makes them indistinguishable from modern windows (Rypema, 2006, 34). Furthermore, she states that one fourth of the material in Canada's solid waste facilities is the debris from construction projects, of which a great portion is the demolition of historic buildings (Rypkema, 2006, 34).
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