Call for papers and posters: Preserving Transcultural Heritage: Your Way or My Way?

I received the text, below, by email from the conference organizers.

Preserving Transcultural Heritage: Your Way or My Way?


ARTIS | Institute of History of Art ‐ School of Arts and Humanities of the University of Lisbon
Alameda da Universidade, 1600‐214 Lisbon ‐ Portugal |
Tel.: (+351) 217920000 | Fax: (+351) 217960063 | Email:

ncThe ARTIS – Institute of History of Art, School of Arts and Humanities of the University of Lisbon and the ICOMOS Portugal are pleased to invite all the researchers, specialists and other stakeholders involved in the process of safeguarding of architectural heritage, to participate in the International Congress Preserving transcultural heritage: your way or my way?, which will take place in Lisbon, between 05 and 08 July 2017.

Paper and poster proposals are welcome until 31 August 2016. Please submit your paper or poster by sending the proposal to (see the submission guidelines below). The proposals will be selected by the session organisers and the Scientific Committee on the basis of the following criteria: relevance, innovation, scientific quality and theme of the session. On 15 September proposers will be notified regarding acceptance of their paper or poster and will receive further instructions.

The organisation encourages multidisciplinary and international research on the safeguarding of transcultural heritage (architecture, urbanism, archaeology, landscapes and decorative arts in built heritage).

Questions on authenticity, identity and patrimonial proceedings in the safeguarding of architectural heritage created in the meeting of cultures

In a time of generalized globalization, which generates more and more miscegenation in almost every levels of our existence, cultural frontiers also tend to fade substantially. This has motivated a growing reaction to defend several unique cultural heritages, considered exceptional identifying elements with irreplaceable value from societies and collectivities that created them. However, this same globalization that began centuries ago with trade, technology, culture, politics and military exchanges between different people, increasing progressively its intensity until our days, became itself originator of a heritage created exactly in the meeting of cultures. This new transcultural heritage (or hybrid heritage) presents a whole range of different complexities that makes more or less complicated its safeguarding and preservation for coming generations.

Among the vast cultural heritage resulting from fusions and re-appropriations between different cultures, stands out the architectural heritage, one of the most visible and tangible signs of any culture: cities, temples, fortifications, public works or merely common houses, among many other built structures. Many times in history this “crossbred heritage” was deliberately abandoned or destroyed because negative symbolisms associated to it, but also obliterated or distorted because of functional or ideological reasons, or simply by ignorance from who tried to protect it.

Whatever are the causes, the fact is that transcultural architectural heritage, created in the conjugation of cultures, still is endangered nowadays, and problematic; its patrimonial preservation continues more relevant than ever. And this is also due to globalization, which imposes new conditionings and contextualization, demanding therefore new ways to deal with them.

As a matter of fact, questions concerning the safeguarding of this kind of heritage involve a vast set of themes: the intense polemic about the preservation of architectural structures, whose memory can allude symbolically to cultures considered as oppressors; the debate on authenticity, generated by confrontations between patrimonial values coming from cultures involved in the creation of each particular transcultural heritage – which could differ substantially, and therefore, should be taken in consideration in the moment to decide how to act to preserve that heritage –; the problematic related to migratory fluxes; the ideological instrumentalisation of architectural heritage; the touristic mercantilization of cultural monuments; and several other related themes, demanding the increment of the debate on them.

In that way, there is an ambition to encourage the dialogue about this matter, which assumed particular relevance for the world heritage panorama. It aims to stimulate the knowledge of paradigmatic cases, the interchange of experiences, the exposure of problems and solutions, and the increase of potential collaborations that can be helpful instruments for the safeguarding of unique transcultural heritages, many times ignobly vandalized, unwisely neglected, irretrievably adulterated or harmfully over-exploited.

Thereby, all concerned communities are invited to participate in the International Congress on Preserving Transcultural Heritage: Your Way or My Way?, opened to academic scholars and specialist technicians, to policy makers and to all society. Besides communication sessions and the poster exhibition, sessions with keynote speakers and round-table debates will also happen, as well as some optional study visits to cases of patrimonial safeguarding in the Lisbon area. The congress languages will be English (preferably) and Portuguese.

Leave a Reply