Date of Award


Publication Type

Master Thesis

Degree Name



Social Work


Anthropology, Cultural.


Ilcan, S.




Cultural heritage is a Western phenomenon that is rooted within European traditions of museology. The designation, preservation, and protection of certain histories inevitably results in the exclusion of others. Heritage is therefore a contested space that involves issues of whose heritage is important enough to be displayed. During the last thirty years, the UNESCO's World Heritage Convention [WHC] has become a global standard in defining cultural heritage. Nonetheless, criticism has emerged from the WHC's members of the developing world who have concerns about their under-representation on the World Heritage List. This lack of inclusion of non-Western peoples inevitably stems from the elitist attitudes of Eurocentric experts that favour Western heritage sites. Through the application of discourse analysis on a number of UNESCO documents concerning the WHC and cultural heritage between 1992 and 2002, this study assesses the influence of WHC experts and experts from other organizations. Research results point to WHC policy shifts from its experts that emphasize the greater inclusion of non-Western sites over the last decade. However, at the same time the documents also indicate the infringement of other organizations through the encouragement of partnerships by UNESCO. Other experts from non-governmental organizations and the private sector now have influence over the shaping of a globalized cultural heritage. Consequently, the WHC is transforming from a protector of heritage to a promoter of heritage tourism development.Dept. of Sociology and Anthropology. Paper copy at Leddy Library: Theses & Major Papers - Basement, West Bldg. / Call Number: Thesis2004 .M36. Source: Masters Abstracts International, Volume: 43-01, page: 0070. Adviser: Suzan Ilcan. Thesis (M.A.)--University of Windsor (Canada), 2004.