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postgraduate thesis: Changing Shichahai: an historic district for a modern world

TitleChanging Shichahai: an historic district for a modern world
Authors
Issue Date2009
PublisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)
AbstractBeijing is the most important and dynamic city in China. A vital ingredient in that success has been its historic environment- its imperial palaces, its temples, its siheyuans, its hutongs- which provides the texture of the Old Beijing city. The historic environment is key to Beijing’s prosperity and a social asset of value. Nearly all the most prosperous and desirable areas in Beijing, the places where people most want to live, work and visit, are those where the historic environment is a dominant influence. The article, “World Heritage Areas: A Critical Analysis”, written by Peter Neville, Hadley in National Post Canada says: UNESCO's World Heritage List is intended to help preserve historic sites, but in China, inclusion on the list can be the kiss of death. The major "carrot" of heritage designation is the increased levels of tourism its prestige generates. Apparently, not only the designated heritage sites, but all the heritages are faced with the fate of being destroyed by tourism and development. Old buildings and lanes in Beijing never stop drawing visitors. The city, even the whole country is now proud of prosperous tourism which is always associated with ‘economic flourishing’. Virtually, every introduction tourism text contains at least one chapter discussing the social, cultural, and environmental impacts of tourism. This topic has also been the subject of extensive investigation in the academic literature. However, in regions that are undergoing rapid development and where an ethos of conservation has not been established, often surprising ignorance of the negative consequences of tourism exists. In China, the attitude is still that the benefits of economic development outweigh any adverse costs such development may have. However, such an attitude is now seen as being shortsighted. As a result, a more balanced approach to tourism is advocated, acknowledging both its beneficial and detrimental effects on host communities and their cultures. Conservation is about ensuring that we make the best use of our historic environment. It is a tool for managing change. Some still believe that conservation is simple about preserving the fabric of old buildings unchanged and developing the economic potential of tourism. They failed to see that conservation is an overarching work, the opposite of a wasteful society. It is easy to destroy - and today we have the tools, the money and the technology - but difficult to create. Cultural heritage, areas, landscapes and communities are a finite resource. Once lost they are lost forever. The purpose of conservation is to ensure that destruction is kept to a minimum while allowing creativity and innovation to flourish. We should preserve the town of the past for the man of the future.
DegreeMaster of Science in Conservation
SubjectStreets - China - Shichahai (Beijing)
Vernacular architecture - Conservation and restoration - China - Shichahai (Beijing)
Cultural property - Conservation and restoration - China - Shichahai (Beijing)
Dept/ProgramConservation

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorJin, You-
dc.contributor.author靳悠-
dc.date.issued2009-
dc.description.abstractBeijing is the most important and dynamic city in China. A vital ingredient in that success has been its historic environment- its imperial palaces, its temples, its siheyuans, its hutongs- which provides the texture of the Old Beijing city. The historic environment is key to Beijing’s prosperity and a social asset of value. Nearly all the most prosperous and desirable areas in Beijing, the places where people most want to live, work and visit, are those where the historic environment is a dominant influence. The article, “World Heritage Areas: A Critical Analysis”, written by Peter Neville, Hadley in National Post Canada says: UNESCO's World Heritage List is intended to help preserve historic sites, but in China, inclusion on the list can be the kiss of death. The major "carrot" of heritage designation is the increased levels of tourism its prestige generates. Apparently, not only the designated heritage sites, but all the heritages are faced with the fate of being destroyed by tourism and development. Old buildings and lanes in Beijing never stop drawing visitors. The city, even the whole country is now proud of prosperous tourism which is always associated with ‘economic flourishing’. Virtually, every introduction tourism text contains at least one chapter discussing the social, cultural, and environmental impacts of tourism. This topic has also been the subject of extensive investigation in the academic literature. However, in regions that are undergoing rapid development and where an ethos of conservation has not been established, often surprising ignorance of the negative consequences of tourism exists. In China, the attitude is still that the benefits of economic development outweigh any adverse costs such development may have. However, such an attitude is now seen as being shortsighted. As a result, a more balanced approach to tourism is advocated, acknowledging both its beneficial and detrimental effects on host communities and their cultures. Conservation is about ensuring that we make the best use of our historic environment. It is a tool for managing change. Some still believe that conservation is simple about preserving the fabric of old buildings unchanged and developing the economic potential of tourism. They failed to see that conservation is an overarching work, the opposite of a wasteful society. It is easy to destroy - and today we have the tools, the money and the technology - but difficult to create. Cultural heritage, areas, landscapes and communities are a finite resource. Once lost they are lost forever. The purpose of conservation is to ensure that destruction is kept to a minimum while allowing creativity and innovation to flourish. We should preserve the town of the past for the man of the future.-
dc.languageeng-
dc.publisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)-
dc.relation.ispartofHKU Theses Online (HKUTO)-
dc.rightsThe author retains all proprietary rights, (such as patent rights) and the right to use in future works.-
dc.rightsCreative Commons: Attribution 3.0 Hong Kong License-
dc.source.urihttp://hub.hku.hk/bib/B47090881-
dc.subject.lcshStreets - China - Shichahai (Beijing)-
dc.subject.lcshVernacular architecture - Conservation and restoration - China - Shichahai (Beijing)-
dc.subject.lcshCultural property - Conservation and restoration - China - Shichahai (Beijing)-
dc.titleChanging Shichahai: an historic district for a modern world-
dc.typePG_Thesis-
dc.identifier.hkulb4709088-
dc.description.thesisnameMaster of Science in Conservation-
dc.description.thesislevelMaster-
dc.description.thesisdisciplineConservation-
dc.description.naturepublished_or_final_version-
dc.identifier.doi10.5353/th_b4709088-
dc.date.hkucongregation2009-

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