How does our love of art and history hinder preservation, whether intentional or not

Our appreciation of art can help in its preservation, but can also be destructive. The opening of prehistoric caves has disrupted the environmental balance that has preserved the cave paintings. Human conflict and art theft, such as that of the 2003 invasion of Iraq, has caused illicit art trafficking on an enormous scale.

The purpose of this essay activity is to highlight problems of art preservation and historic inquiry in the face of human interference.

Prior to beginning this activity, you should do the following:

Complete the text reading for this Module, and through EC Virtual Library, or the New York Times website, locate and read ONE of the following:

  • John Darnton. “The Splendid Cave at Altamira Suffers from its Popularity (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site..” New York Times, 9/13/83.
  • Edmund L. Andrews. “After the War: Culture; Global Network Speeds Plunder of Iraqi Antiquities. (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.”  New York Times, 5/28/03.
  • David Johnston. “Picking Up the Stolen Pieces of Iraq’s Cultural Heritage (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site..” New York Times, 2/14/05.

After your readings, compose a short essay (two pages of double-spaced text) that synopsizes the article you have read and highlights the issues of preservation that are presented. Include your own thoughts on the issues.  In your comments, you may want to consider the following:

  • How does our love of art and history hinder preservation, whether intentional or not?
  • How can our enjoyment of art and history destroy evidence of historic context for an artwork?
  • What has been done to counteract human interference? Is it enough?

Essay Writing Requirements:

  1. Double-space
  2. Two pages or 500+ words
  3. Follow the APA style.
  4. Proofread: Be sure to check your work and correct any spelling or grammatical errors before you post it.
  5. Submit the essay to the assignment dropbox.
  6. Tutoring help is available through Smarthinking (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site..
  7. Grammar assistance is available using the Online Writing Lab (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site. (OWL).
  8. Submit the paper by the due date.

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