A discussion with Dr. Fiona Greenland about returning the Parthenon Marbles to Greece. As the Greeks began their war of independence from the Ottoman Empire 200 years ago, they sought to preserve the artifacts of their historical legacy from the ravages of battle. However, many of Greece’s cultural antiquities remain outside of her borders. In particular, marble sculptures from the Parthenon, known as the Parthenon Marbles, are still housed in the British Museum to this day. With the construction of the New Acropolis Museum, pressure is mounting to return the marbles back to Greece.
The Hellenic Bar Association of Michigan is excited to invite Dr. Fiona Greenland to discuss the story of the Parthenon Marbles. Fiona Greenland is Assistant Professor of Sociology and Assistant Professor of Anthropology (by courtesy) at the University of Virginia. She studies cultural policy and the politics of national heritage. Her book, Ruling Culture: Art Police, Tomb Robbers, and the Rise of Cultural Power in Italy, will be published by the University of Chicago Press in 2021. It situates the emergence of national symbols and icons in Italy’s longer historical entanglements of cultural elites, state officials, and tombaroli, or tomb robbers. Her new work examines the relationship between cultural destruction and civilian deaths in the Syrian war. Greenland’s work has been published in Sociological Theory, Qualitative Sociology, Nations and Nationalism, and the International Journal of Cultural Property, among other outlets. She was a classical archaeologist for 10 years before training as a sociologist.
As we celebrate the bicentennial of Greece’s fight for independence, please join us to hear how Greece is now fighting to bring its history home.
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