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The history and current situation of World Heritage Sites in Syria. The case of Palmyra

New publication by Professor Rubina Raja.

Photo: Scanpix.

Raja, R. (2016). The history and current situation of World Heritage Sites in Syria: The case of Palmyra. In Almqvist, K. & L. Belfrage (eds.), Cultural Heritage at Risk. Stockholm: Axel and Margaret Ax:son Johnson Foundation, 27-47. 

About the book

Today, the ongoing violence in the Middle East provides a severe challenge to our cultural heritage. How do we protect and safeguard our cultural heritage in the face of terror and deliberate destruction? How has the museum faced this task historically? What are the safeguarding methods available today? What security measures are in place to keep objects and art works from falling into the wrong hands or being sold on the black market? How does Interpol and UNESCO deal with this severe task? Can looting be avoided or stopped? How can museums together with the academic world respond to these challenges? And last but not least, what is the role and meaning of original objects for mankind’s collective memory and understanding of history? These and other questions will be raised and discussed together with experts from British, French, German, US and Nordic institutions as well as experts on Iraqi, Libyan and Syrian heritage in order to provide an overview of the different ways in which the museum world can respond. This international symposium is part of the Axel and Margaret Ax:son Johnson Foundation’s seminar series Museums of the World, addressing the idea of the museum, its historical developments and importance today as well as to further the understanding of its influences upon knowledge production, culture and values.