Saturday, December 8, 2007

"The cultural heritage of the world is in serious trouble"

I was very struck by this quotation from one of the more extreme voices in the debate surrounding the international movement of cultural objects.

The writer is Wayne Sayles ("Excellence to ACL = Gee-Gaws to archaeologist", Ancient Coin Collecting, November 30, 2007).

Apparently the threat to the cultural heritage of the world comes not from looters but, according to Sayles, from archaeologists. His objection is to the tone of attacks made on the outreach scheme Ancient Coins for Education (ACE).

The cultural heritage of the world is in serious trouble while there continue to be radical advocates of the right to collect irrespective of the irreversible damage to the archaeological record.

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