Over the centuries, cities across Europe and around the world have been impacted by their Jewish communities; as places of both presence and absence. The touristic presentation of Jewish heritage in many cities belies long and difficult histories but nevertheless recognition through the protection, conservation and interpretation of this heritage is of increasing importance. However, within their wider context of urban heritage, many sites and narratives of former, and existing, Jewish communities face a number of issues that require deeper examination and policy/practical responses.
Being held during the European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018, this Conference is dedicated to addressing Urban Jewish Heritage and the multi-layered issues it faces.
Its aim is to examine, discuss and explore pasts, presents and futures for cities and towns with Jewish heritage. The Conference recognises that the threats to Jewish heritage are complex and dynamic and there is a need to identify new thinking to preserve and sustainably manage both the tangible and intangible aspects of Jewish culture and to communicate this to a wider audience. In doing so, it seeks to address the following indicative questions:
- What are the pressures upon Jewish heritage in the urban context and what levels of protection and conservation are in place to deal with such pressures?
- How can new and sensitive uses be found for Jewish heritage in towns and cities?
- What management models can be applied to Jewish heritage to ensure its sustainability?
- What forms of relationships exist between Jewish heritage sites and urban tourism?
- What are the touristic experiences with Jewish heritage?
- To what extent is the interpretation of Jewish heritage effective and geared to an increasingly cosmopolitan and younger audience?
- What is the role of the museum in the mediation and representation of Jewish heritage?
- How is the intangible cultural heritage of the Jewish community communicated?
Held in the World Heritage City of Krakow in Poland, which demonstrates both the potential and the challenges involved with its own extensive Jewish heritage, the Conference will bring together academics, managers, planners, policy makers and community leaders to address the above questions and more. The Conference is designed to encourage provocative, creative and constructive dialogue across different sectors and different disciplines and will feature case studies and best practice. Thus we welcome papers from those working in heritage conservation, planning, policy, management, interpretation, museums and tourism and from academic colleagues in fields such as anthropology, archaeology, architecture, business, heritage, history, geography, sociology and urban studies.
The event is being organised by my Foundation for Jewish Heritage and the Ironbridge International Institute for Cultural Heritage Birmingham University in association with the City of Krakow and the Villa Decius Association, Creative Europe, AEPJ and Future for Religious Heritage.