Heritage Studies Ph.D. Program to Host National Consortium

JONESBORO – Arkansas State University’s Heritage Studies Ph.D. Program and the U.S. chapter of the International Association of Critical Heritage Studies will co-sponsor “Connecting (to) Heritage Studies in the U.S.: A Consortium,” Friday through Sunday, June 16-18, on the A-State campus, with most sessions in the Carl R. Reng Student Union.

The consortium seeks to further develop an interdisciplinary community in the U.S. that is interested or already involved in cultural heritage-related work.

Dr. Lauri Umansky, director of the A-State’s Ph.D. Program in Heritage Studies, said, “We are excited to support this consortium.  It provides opportunities for anyone interested in heritage within our region to connect with other heritage professionals working throughout the United States and to discover the depth and breadth of ways to present historical resources and cultural expressions to the public.”

Laurajane Smith of Australian National University (ANU) will provide the keynote address on Saturday, June 17, at 1:30 p.m.  Professor Smith is head of the School of Archaeology and Anthropology and director of the Centre for Heritage and Museum Studies at ANU.

The meeting will convene scholars, professionals, and students from a diversity of fields, disciplines and sectors around the concept and uses of ‘cultural heritage’ and potential connections that can be made to its related field, heritage and museum studies, the thriving international heritage discourse, and to each other.

Meeting participants will give presentations and foster discussions on such themes as: “Connecting to Heritage Studies: Theory and Practice,” convening scholars and practitioners in anthropology, applied anthropology, archaeology, folklore, ethnomusicology, museum studies, library studies, cultural policy, public health and environmental studies; heritage studies and university programs; universities and community partnerships; heritage and media; and intangible cultural heritage.

This type of heritage meeting, believed to be a first in the United States, is needed to bring together the wide ranging disciplinary theories/methodologies under the theme of cultural heritage/heritage studies.  Organizers say participants will be able to make valuable connections for increased contributions to the growing global dialogue regarding heritage.

Consortium attendance is free, but pre-registration is recommended.  Participants can pre-register by emailing Dr. Gregory Hansen, ghansen@astate.edu or LaDawn Fuhr, ladawn.fuhr@smail.astate.edu.

Heritage Studies Ph.D. Program

Arkansas State University’s Heritage Studies Ph.D. (Doctor of Philosophy degree) Program is an interdisciplinary doctoral program for individuals seeking senior positions in cultural and historic agencies, cultural and historic tourism, historic societies, museums and archives, parks and historic sites, and consulting firms and heritage-related businesses.

With its interdisciplinary emphasis, the program uses multiple perspectives to explore the interrelationships of scholarship and practice in a variety of disciplines.  These include American studies, anthropology, applied anthropology, archaeology, folklore, public folklore, ethnomusicology, museum studies, library studies, cultural policy, public health, and environmental studies, history, public history, literary and cultural studies, geography, and others in distinctive regions of the United States and the world.

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