Taught by cultural historians, art historians, architectural historians, archaeologists, and sociologists, the Dual Master's in Heritage and Memory Studies offers a professional, interdisciplinary programme in which you study heritage and memory from a critical, cultural-historic and spatial perspective.
Researching the past in the present
Around the world, a notable change has taken place in the arts and culture sector. Whilst the sector was once predominantly focused on museums, theatres and concert halls, we are now witnessing a pervasive musealisation and disneyfication of landscapes, urban areas and buildings, and even of immaterial expressions of everyday culture. This makes our urban and rural environment increasingly stage-managed and nostalgic.
Playing into this are highly selective processes of heritage- and memory-making, enmeshed with identity politics and commercialisation. What importance is still given to the classic canon of art and culture, and to the conservation of archaeological records, monuments, interiors and works of art? How do national and European heritage policies engage with the issue of multiculturalism and of local versus global identity? Does the booming heritage tourism sector affect notions of authenticity and belonging? These questions are central to the Master's programme in Heritage and Memory Studies.
Heritage and Memory Studies at the UvA
In this programme, you will research the various meanings attached to heritage in a museological and educational context (i.e. listed buildings, theme parks, visual media and tourism) as well as its political use. Looking at, for example, the heritage and memory of the Second World War or of the colonial past, you will deal with the inherent frictions that come with historical 'layering', the quest for authenticity in the digital age, museological preservation, public and private management of heritage artefacts and the tourist experience.
You are encouraged to shape the programme to suit your own specific interests in the field. As a Dual Master's programme, the Master's in Heritage and Memory Studies offers a unique combination of practical experience, specialist knowledge and theoretical reflection, and an internship as a central component of the programme.
Heritage and Memory Studies is part of the accredited Master's programme in Heritage Studies. After successful completion of the programme, you will obtain a legally recognised Master’s degree in Heritage Studies and the title Master of Arts (MA).
Heritage and Memory Studies is a 1.5-year professional programme comprising a theoretically-based semester, followed in the second semester by an extensive internship, and is completed with an excursion abroad and a thesis in the third semester. Both the excursion and the thesis unite the theory and practice of the first two semesters.
The programme has a workload of 90 ECTS:
- 30 ECTS Master's courses and excursion abroad
- 12 ECTS Electives
- 30 ECTS Work-experience period (internship)
- 18 ECTS Master's thesis
The first semester of the programme comprises two core courses: 'Heritage and Memory Theory' and 'Who Owns the Past?'. In the first, you will acquire knowledge of and insight into the historiographic development and theoretical principles of heritage and memory studies, and the social debate on heritage and memory. In the second, you will explore various forms of heritage disputes, both current and past, acquiring insight into the political character of heritage and the frequent appropriation of heritage by different parties.
Current Issues: Excursion Abroad
The final semester of the programme opens with a week-long excursion abroad. The excursion abroad builds on the education provided during the first year of study and stimulates cross-pollination between various insights and skills. You will examine the theoretical and practical implications of site interpretations and the cultural, ethical and moral dilemmas inherent to heritage politics. The destination for the excursion will be announced in May of the first year of study. The past few years have seen excursions to various European capitals, New York, St. Petersburg, Jerusalem and Istanbul.
You can tailor your study programme to your own interests by taking an elective specific to the field of heritage studies. Subject to availability, you may also choose from a broad range of electives from other Master's programmes.
This school offers programs in:
Last updated December 4, 2017