The inherent malleability of heritage: creating China’s beautiful villages

Lincoln, T. and Madgin, R. (2018) The inherent malleability of heritage: creating China’s beautiful villages. International Journal of Heritage Studies, 24(9), pp. 938-953. (doi: 10.1080/13527258.2018.1428666)

155438.pdf - Accepted Version



The Beautiful Villages policy is a major policy initiative to secure the socio-economic and environmental development of China. Tracking the development of this policy at a local level reveals the intricacies of policy-making, the extent of local autonomy, and the ways in which rural development is delivered. Contained within this is an examination of the evolving role of heritage within a policy framework that primarily focuses on the natural environment. This article traces the ways in which heritage became a component of this policy in one village in Zhejiang Province. It examines how the value of heritage was gradually realised by government officials and villagers, and how the concept of ecology was broadened to include built heritage, which ensures that funds can be accessed to stimulate rural development. In so doing the article investigates the concept of adaptive governance advanced by Sebastian Heilmann and Elizabeth Perry in the context of the inherent malleability of heritage as both a concept and a process. Focusing on the ways in which institutions recognise and then mobilise heritage to secure instrumental goals enables us to examine the inherent malleability of heritage and how this is aligned to meet specific policy goals in China, as it is around the world.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Madgin, Professor Rebecca
Authors: Lincoln, T., and Madgin, R.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Urban Studies
Journal Name:International Journal of Heritage Studies
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
ISSN (Online):1470-3610
Published Online:25 January 2018
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2018 Toby Lincoln and Rebecca Madgin
First Published:First published in International Journal of Heritage Studies 24(9): 938-953
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher

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