Using the example of China's Wutai Shan-recently designated both a UNESCO World Heritage site and a national park-Robert J. Shepherd analyzes Chinese applications of western tions of heritage management within a n-western framework. What does the concept of world heritage mean for a site practically unheard of outside of China, visited almost exclusively by Buddhist religious pilgrims? What does heritage preservation mean for a site whose intrinsic value isn't in its historic buildings or cultural significance, but for its sacredness within the Buddhist faith? How does a society navigate these issues, particularly one where open religious expression has only recently become acceptable? These questions and more are explored in this book, perfect for students and practitioners of heritage management looking for a new perspective.
Robert Shepherd is Assistant Professor of Anthropology and International Affairs at the George Washington University in Washington, DC, where he teaches courses on contemporary Chinese culture and society, the anthropology of development, and human rights. His research interests include tourism practices, moral frameworks of marketplace behavior, and the construction of cultural heritage in post-colonial societies. Originally from Buffalo, New York, he has served in the United States Peace Corps in rural Nepal, worked on United Nations Development Program projects in China and Indonesia, and taught in Taiwan. He is the author of When Culture Goes to Market: Space, Place and Identity in an Urban Marketplace (2008) and Partners in Paradise: Tourism Practices, Heritage Policies, and Anthropological Sites (2011).