United States Chapter (ACHS-US)

The Chapter was founded with the goals of building a community in the U.S. (with an openness to all of the Americas) around the theories, methods, and issues in heritage and museums studies and practice, as well as strengthening the relationships between U.S.-based scholars and professionals and the international heritage discourse and related sectors. As one way to promote the Chapter and its main aims, it has been heavily involved with the organisation of conference sessions and panels that examine the contributions of U.S.-based scholarship and practice to the heritage discourse, and vice versa. Each of the following activities brought together different groups of participants, including those working in North and South American contexts, drawing on a range of disciplinary perspectives and, thus, helping to add interdisciplinary to the critical heritage studies movement:

  • October, 2013: The session, Connecting Public Folklore to Critical Heritage Studies: Ideas, Issues and Challenges of Heritage-related Work and Cultural Sustainability in the U.S., was held at the Annual Meeting of the American Folklore Society (Providence, Rhode Island).

  • November, 2013: The roundtable, Critical Heritage Studies and Anthropology: An International Conversation, was held at the Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association (Chicago, Illinois).

  • February, 2014: The panel, The Politics of Heritage: Who is Involved, Who Gains, and Who Loses? was organised as part of the Dresher Center for the Humanities Humanities Forum at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC).

  • December, 2014: The session, Critical Heritage Studies in North America: Issues, Ideas and Forward Thinking, was held at the second International Conference of the Association of Critical Heritage Studies (Canberra, Australia).

  • October, 2015: The session, The Contributions of Public Folklore Theory and Practice to the Movement for a More Critical Heritage Studies, was held at the Annual Meeting of the American Folklore Society (Long Beach, California).

  • June, 2016: Forthcoming session, Critical Heritage Studies in the Americas, at the third International ACHS Conference, as well as co-sponsorship of the opening night reception.

As a means of engaging students with critical heritage studies and practice, the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage hosted two seminars (Fall 2013, Fall 2014) for students from UMBC to discuss and debate the safeguarding of living heritage, particularly with respect to the 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage, most popular outside the U.S.

If you are a member of ACHS, you can become a part of the United States Chapter by selecting “United States Chapter” under “Chapters” in your Member Profile in the ACHS Member Directory

If you would like to join the US Chapter Listserv, please fill in your details in the form below. Please make sure to select ONLY the us-chapter list. You will be diverted to another page to confirm your subscription.

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Please direct any enquiries about the US Chapter to the Chapter Coordinator, Dr Michelle Stefano